Monday, December 20, 2010

I have never been to Chicago...

but I tend to always end up sitting in O'Hare for what seems like days!!

Today was finally go time to head home to I-Daho for the holidays. I spent a few hours in the office this morning taking care of an interview and some time sensitive issues and then headed home to finish throwing some things in my bad. I headed to the airport early to try to catch an earlier flight out of DC.

**Side cab driver story: I was asked out. Told I would be taken to a very expensive fancy restaurant if I called my driver when I got back to DC. Right....let's just say I didn't keep that business card!!

I made it out of DC early and arrive to is just starting to snow in Chicago.

Then the delays started.

It has spiraled out of control true to holiday travel and now 5.5 hours later they say I might board a plane. Might- being the key word.

Who wants to bet my bag is lost too? Who's exited to wear thier one outift they have with them! YAY!

Someday I will have to visit this city for real. As much as I love the extended periods of time in the airport I hope the next time I am in Chicago it will be to explore!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

It is time to Par-tay!

It is time for my work's annual holiday party. Along with that came the excuse to purchase a new dress, which I haven't done yet for any of these holiday parties I have attended. Year 1 I wore a yellow cocktail dress that I had for Senior year BD and then last year I wore my fabulous bridesmaid dress from Alli's wedding. This year I found this gem at Dillards.com:

I love her. We had a few minor issues with her at first, but things have been straightened out and I think I am going to love wearing it! I need to get cracking on finishing my feathered hair thing. I'll keep you posted on how the party (and the following morning) turns out.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Browned Butter and Mizithra Dinner

So while I totally understand that Old Spaghetti Factory (or The Fac. as affectionately called be me and MOH) is generic Americanized Italian food I have a deep, unwavering love for their browned butter and mizithra. Sadly The Fac. does not exist out here on the desolate East coast. Kind of problem when I get a brownedbutterandmitzthrafoodcraving attack. So.... I whipped up my own version of this tasty delight. I figured the ingredients could not be too extensive. So here is it for all of you mizithra devouring individuals such as myself.

Ingredients:
Butter (butter is love people)
Wedge of mizithra cheese, grated finely (the only place I have found it here in the DC area is at the Whole Foods on Duke street in Alexandria)
Spaghetti
Olive Oil


Directions:
1) Cook pasta according to package directions. Strain. Toss in a glug of olive oil so the pasta won't stick together if you decide to keep any for left overs.
2) While pasta is cooking, heat a small sauce pan and put in about a 1/4 cup (per person) of butter. Slowly heat the butter until it has browned (yes, it is normal for it to have almost burnt flecks in it, but don't go further than that!)
3) Put pasta in a bowl, drizzle butter on top and sprinkle cheese, toss all together and inhale!

Trust me, not the healthiest meal, but cheap and very very tasty.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Christmas Cheer

A few things to spread some holiday cheer.

First I have share a story about  being the recipient of a random act of kindness. I was at Michael's Arts and Crafts picking up a baking sheet, sprinkles, and craft supplies to attempt a hair piece for my upcoming Holiday Party this past weekend. It was a mad house. The start of holiday shopping, no baskets available, people gawking and clogging isles. I was to my max frustrated and feeling a massive head ache coming on. I was standing looking at some holiday ribbon and this older gentleman comes over to me and in my head I am thinking " I do not have time for this. He places a coupon from an old receipt of his on my pile of things I am struggling to hold on to and says "maybe this will help with purchasing some of your items". It was a 40% off one item coupon! It was so sweet of him! I was stopped dead in my tracks by his thoughtfulness. Needless to say, it really brought into perspective the intention and underlying blessing that this season brings.

Now some images that make me smile. Maybe it is because I have a purple wall now, but I am loving this decorating scheme.

Via Decodir.com

I have always wanted a winter wedding that is just drenched in white and snow. I love some of the features of this table scape and decorating scene:

via apartmenttherapy.com

I know I know...

It was like i disappeared or something! I haven't blogged in what feels like forever! I will make the excuse that I am living in the dark ages right now- without internet or cable! I have been able to use a weak signal from someone else's apartment for 5-10 minutes a night but not nearly enough to write any sort of blog. Tonight we are at the Starbucks that is connected to my apartment building (t-r-o-u-b-l-e) for a few hours.

The new place is treating me well. Still no furniture. Things have felt slightly out of control and frantic as they always do towards the end of the year. So they only progress made has been painting one wall purple and buying the grey paint to attempt stripe on another and to paint a wall in my kitchen. The kitchen is pretty much unpacked but I am still in need of a microwave.

I have done well walking to and from work. The walk really isn't much further than my old place and I welcome the opportunity to kind of zone out and think about things on my mind. It has been brutally windy and cold the last couple days and I do worry that if I get chilled I may start getting colds but we will see if I can tolerate walking until I go home for the holidays.

I did buy a new TV. MY VERY FIRST TV! And I adore it. I watch a few tv shows (on DVD) before falling asleep, and it is blissful!

After many days of searching I also found an awesome deal on a gorgeous blue and teal print fabric shower curtain from the Crate and Barrel outlook.

Things are coming together slowly and surely and once I make the venture to IKEA to purchase the furniture it will really start to feel like home.

And the one and only photo of the purple wall so far! The wall that is still white is the one that we are going to attempt to paint grey horizontal stripes on. (Dad be proud. Your daughter owns and can operate a laser level!)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Time to Play House!

So things have been a little...rocky to say the least with some other areas of my life right now. So moving things over to the new apartment hasn't been going as planned. But tonight I conjured some energy and lugged some of my packed boxes into the car and drove over to the new place. $50 later (my "welcome to your new home" gift courtesy of DC) I can say I have moved in about 45% of my "stuff". Furniture will follow on Sunday. Hopefully tomorrow I can move a few more things over and avoid another damn parking ticket. Ugh. Seriously. So. Not. In. The. Mood. For. That. Naturally I cried. (Doing a lot of that these days). And declared myself in the "hate" side of my love/hate relationship with DC. Why DC? WHY!!!??!

But in good-giddy-it-is-time-to-be-a-big-girl-and-play-house fashion I present the new apartment!! It is pretty stark. A total blank slate to make all mine!

 This is looking in from the entryway.
 Closet which could easily allow me to hang every article of clothing that I own. I will refrain. Maybe.
 Looking out of the closet
 Kitchen!! Seriously about twice the size of the one I have now. I am thinking I will find something to extend the counter space on the right side and possibly do some more pantry space. Mini stove but regular sized fridge.
 My fridge with a bottle of water. Got to stay hydrated!!
 Yes. One of the first things I moved in was beer.
 Looking into the entry way from the kitchen.
Standing in the hallway taking a photo into the new place.


I am so excited to get in there and start making it mine! Paint color samples to follow so you can all help me pick since I can't seem to make up my mind!!!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

How Did I Ever Live Without These...



These came to my attention from West Elm. And for some reason I can not stop thinking about the squirrel! I mean 1) it is a squirrel. 2) He is sequined. 3) Combined, that is awesome. These sparkly little holiday decorating gems are $25 a piece. So for $75 I can not even consider owning the trio. But they are rather stunning and funny at the same time. I want.


Not Real Sure

I have been in a funk.

I know it has been going on, but the fact people have pointed out my less than stellar mood lately makes it official. And officially bad. I hate when I give off the vibe that I am just not a happy person. I am feeling like I am being tried and tested in every possible shape and form right now. Naturally I am not responding well and I am turning into one of those draining people who no one likes to be around. Gross.

I have the big move coming up this week and next weekend and while I am beyond excited to decorate, paint, and finally be able to spread out a bit more I am also nervous and wondering if I have made the right choice. I mean we are talking about a lot of money and even scarier a year long contract.

I get nervous about commitments (surprise surprise) that mean I have to trust in the future. I mean we all know that DC hasn't been the easiest place for me to move to. It has grown on me, and I do feel way more established than I did a year ago, but I still feel a little out of place. I still miss people and my family some days to the point where my insides hurt. So I am just nervous that everything that I have built on here could unravel and fall apart. And I know, I know, take it one day at a time, right? And chances are that in the next year I am going to like DC even more, and feel even better about the person I have become here. It's just hard. Hard to trust. So I have been doing a lot of praying lately, and just asking to have a sense of relief when I get my apartment keys. So if you have any spare prayers...throw them my way! :)

So I have my fingers crossed that Monday I will get my keys, and all my stress, frustration and anxiety about this whole thing is just going to melt away and I will know that this is right. It is also so hard to keep in mind that there are so many things in life that I just don't have control over. It is so easy to be mad and frustrated when things come up and ruin your plans or throw you off course but the reality is you just have to let it go. This is something I am really not good at. I take it personally. But I got myself so worked up this week about things I have absolutely zero control over and it was a miserable feeling. So I need to get better at just walking away from things that suck but aren't anything I can change.

Perhaps this is a prime moment to remind myself of the four rules:

1) Whoever comes are the right people.
2) Whatever happens is the only thing that could have.
3) Whenever it starts it is the right time.
4) When it is over, it is over.

So thank you all for bearing with me the last week or so. I know I have been less fun than I can probably imagine, but that you for loving me and being there for me to lean on.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Singing the Blues

So I thought I had made up my mind about paint. But here I am. Still searching for that

absolutely


perfect



stunning



color.



Here are some colors I found tonight that have peaked my interest:



I love the top one. (and remember people, it is only one wall). I also love this idea of using the different papers/fabrics in frames to create color.

Any other thoughts from your lovely readers on my color conundrum?

Do I need to just do a light hue? Something more neutral?

Also....who thinks that this

could be done with IKEA Lack floating shelves? I love this idea of a floating desk in my new place. Apparently mounting things to the wall gives a perception of height and space. This desk area is functional, as it houses a computer place and TV place, and without the legs helps keep the space from being too "cluttered". Photo was found on apartmenttherapy.com and we are awaiting if the owner of the floating desk is going to post a how-to.

What do we think? Could a Lack shelf do the job??

Any other awesome storage, small space, color, design ideas you have to share please please please send them to me!

I Have Arrived (well for this brief moment of satisfaction)

Today was a day I have been holding out for a long time for. I have glimmers of the "this is why I do what I do and why I hit repeat everyday and come to work". But today was a day where I got the full blown feeling of knowing what I am doing, doing it well, and having someone recognize that I am doing it well. The act that caused this was rather simple when I type it out: I found a hire that was a home run. One of those candidates that elicits the "yes, this was a perfect read for the position" reaction. And it was rewarding. I felt like I flew solo for the first time. Granted I have recruited and hired people for all two years I have been at this job now, but today's conclusion of my recruiting efforts was different. I felt like the light went on and I am finally starting to understand how things snap together, how to do the little things flawlessly and to the point that I can free myself up to do bigger and more meaningful things.

Perhaps it was the interaction with the candidate. I love the human aspect of my job. (slightly ironic considering I am currently researching the inhuman components that make my job easier). But I love the human impact of my job. Just a few days ago I was totally down and out about feeling as if I was invisible, that my work was invisible and that I could keep grinding away, doing what i am doing, making progress that I see and making changes that I notice, but everyone else would just pass by my office and continue to wonder what it is that I exactly do. Today reminded me why I picked to do this, why I am here, why I keep pushing forward. And yes tomorrow I am sure things will be as usual. But I was elated today. I did something real, something tangible, something that someone else acknowledged as great.

Pretty sure I am going to sleep like a log for the first time in quite awhile. Bliss!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

I saw a Kat

Raise your hand if you watched the Real Housewives of DC??


Oh no? Not you? Too good for that?


Well I wasn't. I got hooked. And I thought it was hilarious. Perhaps it was because they were in the city I live in that I was so hooked, but whatever the reason, I loved the DC season.

So the real story. Me and Ems met up one night after work (this was at many rain checks on my behalf) to hit up Hank's Oyster Bar. I had never had Oysters so we started off slow with a glass of wine and then Ems, being the friendly Oregonian that I love starts chatting it up with the bartender. Soon we have a plate of a sampling of oysters. I am not hesitant to trying new food, but I do like to know the proper way to eat it. Luckily I had googled what and how you are to handle an oyster. Long story short.....

I now dream about oysters. I love them. I can not wait to have more and to hit up Hank's again. Especially since they had an outstanding lobster bisque!

So after some more oysters, a few more drinks we are just chatting. I see this familiar blond woman come in with a man and order drinks at the bar. Now for me to see someone who looks "familiar" in DC means one of two things 1) I am going crazy or 2) the world really is that small. But the reality was...I did know her! Well I knew of her. She was KAT. The Kat from Real Housewives. British accent and all. AND she sat right next to me. I was star struck giddy. (You can ask ems about my childish behavior).

I made Ems take a picture. Obviously not with her looking and knowing, so its of her back and my super excited goofy face. But look at that hair and you'll know it was here.

Quite the entertaining evening!

Oh yea, just me and Kat. Eating oysters, being bffs. Ya know. Usual Friday night for me.
I almost peed my pants with excitement. No joke.

Friday, October 29, 2010

I want this...and this.... and this too.

You know when you tell yourself you are not allowed to do something. And well it does everything but make it easy to not do that something. Instead you start becoming obsessed with whatever you told yourself you couldn't do.

Well with the new place on the horizon and some double rent issues (don't get me started) I told myself no knew clothes for awhile. Well this just resulting me in lusting after this:

 I love the orange cuffs and the green belt! Playful, but adult.
 I would wear this every weekend. E-V-E-R-Y weekend. End of story. (This one is almost affordable for me right now)
 I've been craving a robe to put on in the mornings to get ready and to lounge in on weekends and I love how plush and cozy this one looks. A bonus points that this doesn't look like it belongs on a 90 yr old.
 Um. Yes. Side tie bow. Ballerina-esque.
 Me likey.
This dress has a special place in my lusting heart right now. I adore the neck and waistline, but go to anthro and look at the detail on the top. I want I want I want. Too bad I need a couch :(



All photos and clothing at Anthropologie

The Hot Pocket

This is a really strange blog for me to write. And in all honesty, I have no idea if I will ever publish this.[After consideration I feel that it is something I do want to be on the blog and I do apologize if anyone finds this too personal or an improper means to express myself but here it is]. I feel  strange being one of those people who utilizes a public forum to disclose my hurt and pain over the passing of a good friend of mine. I feel like my emotions about it are incredibly private. I can't decide if sharing this is something that is helpful for me and also honoring our friendship, or if it just a discounted way for me to talk about my hidden feelings. I will tell you this:  he taught me a lot. And as I write that, a huge lump comes into my throat as I am sure with any friend any of us have, there are special moments with that person that you know no one else can share, see, live, enjoy, savor, and remember like you can. Granted these personal memories make me happy. They are my memories with him, but it can be lonely sitting and dwelling in your own personal, isolated memories.

He was my senior prom date. It was a dramatic (high school dramatic) turn of events for us to end up at prom together. We didn't even go to the same high school, so it felt like such a big deal to bring him to my prom. I don't remember a whole lot about prom. I remember I didn't like how my hair was done. I loved my dress that my mom so graciously indulged me in driving all the way to Seattle to purchase and I felt incredibly beautiful. And then I remember him. I am pretty sure he was one of the only guys in an all white tux. I remember the photographer said his tux looked fantastic with my dress. He also dropped a piece of meat on my dress fresh out of fondu pot at dinner. Somehow you couldn't even tell.

That summer before I left for college I spent a lot of time "at the lake" (it was a man-made lake) watching him do his pro water skiing thing and patiently teaching me how to get better at my junior water skiing skills. There was a large event at the lake one afternoon and I had driven out to spend the day with him watching the competition. For some reason or another, it must have been around lunch time, he discovered that I had never eaten a hot pocket in my life. He was fairly appalled. Fate be true, he had a few in the freezer. And so sitting on the dock I bit into my first delicious, gooey, cheesey, delightful, cheese and ham hot pocket. It was bliss. Even more so as I was seriously dancing still and had gotten to the point where I watched everything that went into my mouth. I remember how he tossed it in front of me on a paper plate fresh out of the microwave, crossed his arms and looked at me as I took my first bite. If you knew him, you knew that he had these amazing blue eyes.

I miss him. And I cringe every time I have to scroll through the M's in my phone book as I don't think I  could ever delete his phone number. Grief is a nasty little emotion. It hides and then out of no where it jumps out and completely knocks you out of commission for an evening. The next day is carefully tucks itself away and you just hold on for the next wave of the surprise in missing someone. I just keep telling myself that there is reason as there was reason for the memories I made with him. My thoughts and prayers are with his family daily right now. Through the sadness I remind myself, that he had a whole lot of good times, and I am so lucky to have been a part of even a small fraction of those. 

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Paint

So I am really stuck. I get to paint my new apartment when I move in, and I am at a total loss of the "look" I want the new place to have. I want a Biggirlsophisticatedyetbeautifulandclean look that incorporates some neutral tones, a splash of color but mainly feels like me, and feels comfortable. So this is where you all come in. I really like the idea of a teal, grey or maybe a really really dark purple for the wall(s) (we have yet to decide if we will paint just one accent wall or do an accent wall and then neutrals. This room originally caught my interest when I was first drawn to the display of keys:

But I am not sure it is exactly what i am wanting. I love the bright with the white and then you can see the dark bed coverings.

So I found this tonight, pretty much the only thing my picky palate is really enjoying at the moment after hours of looking:


                                                      via apartment therapy
I love that I could pair it with some greens, grey cream/whites, black and or brown as well. What do you all think?

I am also starting to really think about furniture and as much as I know I am going to end up having an IKEA infiltrated apartment I can't help but feast my eyes on some other items:

image unknown
Much enjoying this couch. As much as I love the feeling of a microfiber couch I am pretty sure IKEA cotton will just have to satisfy my cravings. I also really like the pillow in the middle. Look stunning with my wall above much?

I need a designer.

Sigh.

And maybe someone to make decisions for me?

Anyways send me any color inspirations you all have. I am really hitting a dead end here. Also any great advice on setting up a 415 square foot apartment to be function, yet comfy would be much much much appreciated!!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Baked with Love

On a trip to IKEA (oh how many of those there will be in the next two-three months!) the lucky find of a set of "woodland creature" cookie cutters inspired me to battle the roaches (ok ok there really aren't roaches anymore, but I still have to poke fun at the situation) and the small kitchen and whip up some of my grandma Tory's rubber cookies (a gingerbread type cookie with the best frosting you will ever taste). This was my first attempt at the cookies and while they couldn't even come close to the delish ones I was so lucky to savor as a child, they were not bad.

My grandma had a scalloped cookie cutter which I have safely tucked away for when I have my own place (eeee! Oh wait! I DO!) to cut out her cookies. I wanted to do something special since I knew I would be taking these into work. That set of "woodland creature" cookie cutters just so happened to have a HEDGEHOG!! My department has kind of adopter the hedgehog as a mascot from some of our company materials. (Core values, etc.) For good measure I also made a few Idaho cookies with my new Idaho cookie cutter that I have yet to use. Here is what transpired:

 Making some dough
   Rolling and cutting
 Cut out hedgehogs
 IDAHO!
 Version #1 of the frosted hedgehogs
Some Idaho Love
Version two of frosted Hedgehogs

The cookies were a huge success at work and totally worth the tedious process. I always forget that rolling and cutting cookies takes like 6 hours longer than you estimate. The hedgehogs are pretty cute and I already have plans to use the rest of my creatures in the set of cookie cutters!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

All Mine...Sweet Sweet Mine

Ladies and gentleman I am here to announce that..... drum roll please.....I have officially put on some big girl pants and am the proud renter of a 415 square foot studio! And yes...it is all mine! No sorority girls(sorry ladies! I love you but living with you for four years was plenty!), boyfriends (yea, never doing THAT again), roommates, or anyone else around for that matter. I get to sleep, eat, throw, place, decorate, dirty, clean, however I darn well please and no one can say anything to me about it! I even get to paint! (A trip to home depot may be in order later today to pick out some paint samples).

Again, it is very small, but for little me it should be just fine. I have a separate kitchen that is quite a bit larger than what I have right now (and I am sharing that with TWO people) so this is going to seem like a palace, a walk-in closet that is big enough that if I really wanted to I could put a desk in their with my clothes and call it an "office". The bathroom is a pretty standard old-dc-apartment-building bathroom with white fixtures and is going to need some creative storage solutions. The main room has two nice sized windows and beautiful, shiny, hardwood floors. There is even a small gym in the basement (bye-bye gym membership I never use) and a good sized laundry room that is dead roach and rat free! The building is a bit farther than where I currently live from my work but my goal is to walk at least one direction each day during the "ok" months and then in like Jan., July, and August I can take the bus which stops at my front door and drops me off right at work. We are debating if cable is feasible but internet will have to happen, so a minor expense on top of rent but nothing major.

I am so excited to make 1546 and 1 trips to IKEA and Target that it will take to get everything I am going to need to make it home! This will be the first time I have ever lived completely by myself and I have to say...I am pretty proud of myself. I have wanted to do this for awhile, but to find someplace, have the job to support myself and being confident that I am going to be able to run my "household" completely solo is a huge deal.

So this is adulthood huh?

I will keep you all posted on when I get pictures of the inside but for now the best I can do is a picture of the outside of the building.


My new place is in the left indent of the building.

So now begins the eternal quest to decorate it to be stunning and incredibly practical. If any of you have any paint, furniture or decor ideas for me send them over!!



Thursday, October 14, 2010

Birthday Girl!

It was this lovely lady's birthday this past week:

(obviously the lady on the right is the birthday girl)

I was sad to not be there since it was a big birthday and naturally (true to form) her gifts are late/in transit/sitting on my living room table half completed/somewhere in Texas according to fedex/ on my dresser. So yes. True to form--gifts will be belated! (But i can't wait to show you all when I am done with one part of it!)

Anyways,

My sister is the best. I can't imagine having a better role model. She is so driven, committed, smart, funny, beautiful and put together and she still always has time for everyone.

She's kind of amazing and I love her.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY NICOLE!!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

What have I done!!??

Well I have done something that makes me incredibly nervous, scared, excited and happy...

A clue:


Yup. Thanks to a girl at work I got the tip off about BTI in Logan Circle. I can not tell you how excited I am to go take a ballet class tomorrow. I am also really really nervous. I haven't danced in a LONG time. And that last year in college when I was finishing out my minor in dance I was so over the dance department at UW I just didn't care and only went to class to make sure I graduated. I really want to find something here that makes me excited and I am hoping this is it. It is a bit expensive to be getting back into dance, but I figure it is good for my physical and mental health AND maybe I'll make some friends. So class is at 1:30 tomorrow. I did a quick barre tonight just to make sure I haven't forgotten my french :) but I know tomorrow is going to kick my ass. I am going to be so sore and exhausted. But if I like it I am going to go ahead and purchase a class card and hopefully get into the pattern of going more.

As some of you know, ballet/dance was a HUGE part of my life for quite awhile and I honestly have not felt whole since I stopped. But dance in really personal. You have to be comfortable with where you are dancing and who is teaching you. I am praying that BTI is awesome and I love it. Fingers crossed for me people!

Also a round of applause....I have officially lost 15 pounds! Which was my first weight milestone. I have another 15 to go (hopefully this dance thing will contribute!). After moving out here I pretty much ate my emotions for a solid year until I moved. Things are a lot better now but it is just hard to find the time to active things outside of work. I am going to make a big push in the next few months to see if I can jump start the next phase so I can go home for Christmas feeling really great! Anyone up for walks in the evening?


Stamping Me Crazy

A few weekends ago I was down in Charlottesville for the PBR (yes, bull riding that's right and more about that later) but I went into a store called "Rock Paper Scissors" and saw some Japanese masking tape. The practical non-crafty part of me said not to buy it. So we left empty handed. Naturally now I have thought of 900 uses for the printed blue tape. So I have been on the hunt. Well not only did I find some amazing online stores to buy Japanese tape (I am still narrowing down my choices) but I also found some stamps that (for obvious reasons) I am lusting over. Cutetape has some seriously temping items to purchase, but right now these key stamps are high on my list. 


Thursday, October 7, 2010

The world is senseless sometimes. Right now is one of those times and I am struggling to keep in perspective that things happen for a reason. What I am taking away from it all right now is that you can never tell the people in your life that you love them too much. A good friend sent me this today:

"If there is ever a tomorrow when we are not together...there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing, even if we are apart...I will always be with you."
- Milne

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

It's October and that Means Pumpkins

I eyed this last year on Martha Stewart.com and kept saying I would go buy a pumpkin and give it a shot. Obvis. we never got around to it or I wouldn't be sitting here saying I need to really do it this year. Anyways how classy would a monogrammed pumpkin be?

Photo from MarthaStewart.com



Classy and fabulous. I think yes.

Would it be overly ambitious to think I could do two initials? Or maybe even three?


Monday, October 4, 2010

The Key To A Home

I was sent this great idea from a friend who saw this on apartment therapy.


                                                                      photo from apartmenttherapy.com
 

I love this idea! Unfortunately I don't really have keys from my previous residences. In fact I would say the world of technology and protocol has ruined my ability to take on this little project. Here are my past living arrangements and the lack of keys:

  • The parentals casa. (Still have a key to the house which is always a nice reminder that my parents always welcome me home)
  • Le Maison De ADPi. No such thing as a key. We had these little plastic cards that had pictures of keys on them that unlocked the front door. We also had to give those back when we moved out of the house.
  • Houston hot house. Pretty sure we made that key without asking, but were nice enough to give it back when I left at the end of my few months there.
  • Virginia humble beginnings abode. There was a key fob for building entry and then a real key to the front door. They inventoried those keys like vultures. So no key.
  • DuPont Roach Hut. Not sure if I will get to keep the key, doubtful.
I do have a growing license plate collection: Idaho, Virginia and I am sure some day DC. I don't have a WA state one since I managed to avoid registering and licensing my car there, but in time I know I will have one for the collection. Maybe I can do something cute with my hubby (whoever he is) and our collected license plates.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

It Can Sneak Up On You

Well apparently I have been bottling up a TON of emotion that all came bubbling out tonight.

It all started with the roaches. They are back. Ok like 2 are back but when you start poking around the kitchen you start seeing the signs and that just drove me into a state of disgust and frustration. Luckily I got out of the apartment for a few hours and then got to home a bit refocused and started attacking the kitchen yet again. Over half the kitchen is in the living room. The roommate is disgruntled. But they are roaches. So there. We (I) sprayed and scrubber with various cleaning solvents until my hands hurt. Sprayed again. And then finally was able to put a few things away. While I am doing this my mind just got going and I just started feeling so helpless about everything. Sometimes I just feel like I am letting things happen to me rather than really taking control and other times I feel like I am trying to do so much to steer a situation and everything is working against me. Uncryptically, I want my own space. I want to have a space where I feel at home and not like a renter. Not really having a place I call "home" for the last year has really hindered my ability to be content with DC and I am tired of it. I either want to say "yes this if for me" or put my tail between my legs and call it a day. I am exhausted of "trying to make it work". I want a home. But I feel like there are a million things screwing up my plans. And then I start to think about the looming year  lease that this idea comes with. Ok. What is a year? (yea wow, don't ask me that question because it results in tears and emotional blubbering). Anyways, the apartment stress got me going, the tears and girl sniffles got rolling, and then the irrational crazy girl in me reared its ugly head.

We are okay. It was probably good that I just let it bubble over, I feel a little better. Tired but better. But that's were that is.  Kitchen half put together and no closer to solving this apartment issue.

I just get nervous. I am a nervous person. I am a cautious person. And I don't think it is helping when I am having to make decisions like this. Questions to be asked, determinations to be made, trust to be leaned on, and faith to throw caution to. Not things I am very good at. Prayer please for it to work out how it is intended to be because I am realizing there is something more than me dealing with this right now.


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WEEKEND UPDATE

To switch gears in this post I'll tell you all a little about my weekend. Friday I drove out to Alexandria to get myself a pint of pumpkin frozen custard to enjoy while I watched the movie "Valentine's Day". It was smart move and the movie was one that required some sort of frozen delight.

Saturday I did some personal stuff and then headed out to VA to check out IKEA and  Wegmans. Wegmans was amazing. Domestic bliss. I want to drive to VA every weekend just to grocery shop at that beautiful store! I can't even describe the beautiful produce section. I was lusting after foods I had never even seen before!

Today was sports filled and roach killing. I know you are jealous.

The remainder of my Sunday looks like some work, snuggled with the bears and ironing for tomorrow. Let's all pray for a quick week as I already feel like I could use another weekend!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Gem of Entertainment

Hmm just spent a solid 45 minutes falling head over heels in love with How About Orange. In the DIY section I found about 62 projects I want to make. Sigh. Perhaps when I am a stay at home mom who has a fulfilling career owning a dance studio and no children? Anyways check it. You'll love it as much as me. I promise.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Till DC Do We Part.

At the start of August I reached my 2 years in DC. eep! Who would have ever thought I would have survived (and we can say kinda-sorta-thrived if we are being generous) for two years here! I have done a ton in my time here in DC and honestly if you would have asked me two years ago if I thought I would be sitting in my own lovely bed, with just my things surrounding me, thinking about my job I have been at since I moved here, I would have laughed at you. Very very hard. And probably cried at the thought. There have been a lot of times in the last two years that I have been scared out of my mind. Times where I didn't know what was going to come next. Times where I had to make some choices. Times where I didn't have choices. Times where I loved being here. And times when I still just don't.


But for better or worse. I am here. And somehow doing okay at taking care of myself. I do have to say I would not be here for sure if it wasn't for both my worlds of friends in DC and Seattle/Idaho who have kept me laughing and looking forward.


In a few weeks I will also hit my one year in my current apartment. Most of you know the situation with the apartment and that ideally I would like my own place sometime in the near future. But it is a wonderful, adorable apartment, and I can say for being the first apartment that I have picked to live in entirely on my own...it has worked out well.

I also am just about to cross my two year mark at world. Yea that's right! Who's wearin' big girl pants now!

(Ok well maybe they are like dress-up big girl pants...but still)


All of these "anniversaries" correspond with some pretty personal "anniversaries". And I promised myself that while this is a public forum and I am letting anyone read this. I would not shy away from at least recognizing some of these personal and emotional things, just to preserve them along with all my other memories over the past couple of years. So to put it out there for myself: this all coordinates with the ending of a long-term relationship that spurred both of these other "anniversaries". Again, if you asked me what my life would look like two years ago, where I am living now, what I am doing, well it would not have been anywhere close to what I thought. I say that recognizing that some of the best things have come to me in the last two years, even if not planned or anticipated. And also some pretty tough things have happened. But it is all about the journey, right?

But for the grand finale!!!!




The last and final, really really reallyreallyreallyreally BIG anniversary is.............


The Blog turned 2 on 8/30!!!! Happy Belated Birthday TFWDC!! Hopefully this is some blogging motivation to make the time to really start documenting again. But to all my readers, family and friends....Thanks for keeping me wanting to blog for two years! I love the written record of my life here and I love sharing it with you all!

                                                           image courtesy of: http://whipup.net/tag/card/

This card is a must-make for me! I love a good pennant/bunting and the miniature on a card. Dar-ling. Ps...someones BIRTHDAY is coming up!!!! 2 word to guess: Peanut and Love.

Anyways.

Pretty Sure the Universe Wanted me to Read This


Via: Seth Godin's Blog. Visit it. It's good.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Hair Magic.

Ok I couldn't resist anymore. I went for a walk this evening to do some thinking and to pick up some hair spray and I finally broke down when I saw these in stock for the first time in months:

So they came home with me. They live up to all the hype I have made in my head. I love them! Just two holds my entire bundle of ultra fine/slippery locks in a casual bun/mass of hair. Hopefully I can keep track of them unlike bobby pins. I seem to go through bobby pins like a high school boy drinks a gallon milk. For the price I need to have these on tracking devices!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Charlotte's Web

So a few weeks ago I started noticing this very large spider web being spun right outside my window. The spider (we shall call him Charlotte. Yes, HIM.) was using my window screen and the old clothes line that is outside my window to create his web of mastery. Well I thought that a good rain would wash him down the spout (itsy bitsy spider). I was wrong. Rain came, rain went. Charlotte stayed.

The web grew, and grew, and grew. At last Charlotte started catching icky things in his web and was making one of those nasty looking balls of bug devastation and web. I couldn't take looking at it every morning when I was doing my hair and make-up.

Finally I made up my mind that Charlotte was not welcome outside my window.

I looked around my room for something disposable that I could wipe the web down with and then throw out the window so it would land near the garbage piles that are two floors down from my window. Q-tip. Too-short (spider could jump and land on my hand. ew.)  Hanger. Plastic. Not something I want to sacrifice to the spider disposal efforts. Paper. Too flimsy. Spider would win.

So we tried blowing Charlotte and his ball of ick away with my hair dryer. I think Charlotte liked it. He leaned into to it....not away.

Finally! A brown paper bag that had carried a bottle of wine home one evening. Perfect.

I scraped web, Charlotte, and the ball of ick onto the bag (kind of how the swirl cotton candy around those cones). Panicked as Charlotte started to get all frantic and screamed. Launching the paper bag out the window and down to land on the neighbors window sill below. Crap. Oops.

So now the neighbors get Charlotte.

End of story....


or not.

Next day I come home to an open window...with no screen.

All my jostling had loosened my screen and during the day it fell down to the trash piles. Serves me right for trying to rid my window of Charlotte. The universe taking revenge. Anyways. After a few nails, dirt on my hands and some inappropriate words of frustration. The screen is back in place. Charlotte I believe is still getting to know the neighbors below me and all is good and right in the world.

P.S.: Charlotte really think about that "you are what you eat" saying.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Good and Bad of it All.

What Andrea did today that was bad:

  • Slept way way way too much
  • Wore flip flops all day when she knows it will make her back and knees hurt
  • Drank her calories with her first pumpkin spice latte of the season
  • Bought way way way too many clothes

Andrea did today that was good:

  • Got lots and lots of sleep
  • Wore a sundress and flip flops for probably one of the last times this year
  • Had her first delish pumpkin spice latte of the season
  • Bought some new clothes that I can't wait to wear!

What Andrea purchased:

       Target:
  •        The usual makeup, shampoo/conditioner, more beauty stuff, new black flats that have a big poufy flower on the toe, long purple tunicish shirt to be paired with other purchase today or black leggings.
      Gap
  •       Hottness blue plaid skirt, white ruffle tank to go with skirt, grey cardigan to get with said skirt and tank. Grey long shirt that should look great with either jeans or black pants. Also purchased slacks on an impulse on the way to check out. Must return.
       Old Navy
  •        Pink button down, two camis and pair of skinny jeans that we are still feeling a bit scared to wear in public. Not sure if I have lost enough weight to really pull them off.
        Barnes and Noble
  •         Book three in the bride quarter series by Nora Roberts. These are my total guilty pleasures right now. Mallory gave me the first two as a thank you after her trip to DC (Thanks Mal! I demolished them within days of starting!) The fourth book doesn't release for a few more months but if you want a nonsense read to get your mind off real life...these are them!
So yes I spent entirely too much money today but I think my clothing purchases are things I will wear a lot and well needed. (Retail therapy also helps me de-stress too :) )

My Saturday was very enjoyable with my first trip to Baked and Wired (yum!), slept (some more), cooked some healthy food (something besides my microwave or mac n' cheese dinners) and watched some college football. (Sad day UW. YAY Idaho!)

I am nowhere even emotionally ready for tomorrow. But I guess after all the money I spent this weekend I need to go to work to pay for it all. Hopefully this is the week things really slow down for me. I could use a solid week of leaving the office at 6 and getting to come home and do things I enjoy!

Hope all you lovely readers had a fabulous weekend!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

If I Had the Time

Catching up reading my favorite blogs and came across this posting at MansionMogul . Brooke is such a creative person and I am so impressed with her baking, crafting, homemaking, photograpahy and all around awesomness. Anyways to make my own list of things I would love to do in the next few weeks:

1) Bake something incredible and new (I really want to make a two tiered cake with different colored fondant polka dots and make a cute little pennant banner to hang over the top of the cake)
2) Spend a weekend afternoon laying in a park with a good book, cheese, baguette, savory cured meat and good company and enjoy that lack of humidity and sunshine.
3) Scrapbook. I have a million photos accumulating and no time to do anything with them!
4) Go explore Great Falls some weekend while the weather is perfect!
5) Make homemade mac n' cheese
6) Get a pedicure and a massage
7) Plan a dinner or brunch with friends
8) Get custard and the dairy godmother. There are some good flavors on the agenda!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Do you ever?

Get that feeling that something big is brewing and you are just like a sitting duck waiting for it to come at you. Not necessarily in a bad way but just that there is change, commotion, rustling in your life?

I may be crazy but I get flutters in my stomach, start anticipating and getting anxious/nervous about whatever "it" is. And then wait.

Well that is where I am. I just feel like something is changing or moving or going to jump out and attack me (or not). Case in point: I am ansty pansty right now, hence this insomniacesque post.


Anyways, I will let you know what comes my way. If anything.

Week recap and weekend plans:

Monday: Super stressful and all around bad day. Somehow we survived. I also went to bed at like 10:30 Sunday, Monday, Tuesday night, and oddly it made me MORE tired the next day! How does that work?
Tuesday: Busy busy busy. I am not sure when things with work are ever going to slow down again. Maybe I don't want them to. I love being busy but I am really run down.
Wednesday: I looked forward to Top Chef allll day. A somewhat disappointing and sad ending (seeing angelo cry and lull around in bed asking for his doctor's permission to cook was pretty funny). Watched the finale in good company, combined with some good food and had a general all around fabulous evening.
Today a whirlwind where I still just feel like I am ten steps behind on everything. I worked late and then treated myself to a big bowl of my favorite guilty pleasure food and a bad/amazing chick flick. Yes I just finished mopping up my tears from watching Letters To Juliet. How awesome am I?

Pretty awesome.

I need to set aside a lot of time this weekend to getting my life organized and getting a game plan in life for my ADPi position. some craft time may be necessary as I have 9056 and 1 projects in my head and really need to start using some of the supplies I have stock piling in my shoebox room.

Hopefully sometime to catch up on a blog about Erica's visit AND my trip home to see the little man and the family!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Where o Where Does the Time Go?

I swear that the days, hours, weeks and months are just being swallowed by my own personal black hole right now. I know that I am working a lot. And that no matter how hard I try I bring my work home with me emotionally which I know has started to wear on me (and the other people in my life). But I have to say I honestly don't know how when I was working full-time in the previous chapter of my life, pre-fauxdivorce, how I managed to cook real meals, blog frequently, run errands after work, clean, do laundry at least once a week, and manage to squeeze a work in everyone and awhile. Right now I luckily get fed a real meal (thanks friends), consider my walk to work my "workout", instantly enter a comatose state the minute I sit on the couch, and every once in awhile get around to cleaning my room, and very  very very rarely write a post. How is that possible? Yes I work longer hours right now, but I live closer to work, and yet the hours just slip away from me through the day. I can say this all makes me understand that it is imperative to surround yourself and spend time with the people you love and make you happy in your spare time!!

Amidst the craziness I still have had some great adventures in the past few weeks. I managed to spend an extravagant amount of money to fly home and visit my family (and get to spend time with my ADORABLE nephew) which was such an amazing trip! Erica came to visit me and we had a fun laid back visit. For work I have had the opportunity to visit our Detroit office as well as one of our client site in Cleveland. I made my first batch of potato salad solo. Erin and I have managed to see each other TWICE in 4 weeks which has been so nice to have a set girls-night and setting aside time to just be friend time. (stay tuned for her amazing birthday gift to me!) And have managed squeezing in some good reading while on flights and making it part of my bedtime ritual.

I am playing with the ideal of alternating one goal for each month that I try to integrate into every day. I was trying to read before bed every night since it is supposed to be more calming and stress reducing that browsing the Internet. I would like to try to go to bed earlier more consistently. Pack my lunch more frequently. Go for walks after work (or on my lunch break), cook ACTUALLY cook more. Maybe this will be my new attempt at a 25 before 25? Any thoughts? Or maybe just incorporate it into my 25b425? Any ideas for the big 25 list? (yes very very very delayed 25 before 25, BUT at least it is being addressed :))

Anyways....thank you fabulous readers for sticking with me through this spotty posting. Hopefully it will improve. Happy Wednesday All!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Chipotle

I discovered that I am not the only one who sleeps like this at night:



It runs in the family. Nicole and Wyatt do it too.