Saturday, March 31, 2012

Finding my normal again...

What a whirlwind March has been! I think if I hadn't been so busy at work I would have been OK with the balancing act that is my life... however... no one ever asked me what would be easiest for me! Shame on them!

I've finally gotten back to budgeting my time so I'm finding my free time, my normal, again.  It's been nice.  Now I just have to get back my motivation.

I feel like there is so much to catch you up on but I don't know where to stop, honestly I don't even know where I left off.  Here is my March in a nutshell: cousin's baby shower, sister-in-law's baby shower (which I helped plan so multiply this one by a thousand), St. Patrick's Day, The Vow, cousin's wedding, Face Time with my niece, too much Draw Something and, Scrambled/Words/Hanging With Friends, midterms, fiscal year strategic plans, new software at work, scrubbed the siding on the house, My Spanish Lab (20 exercises assigned each week!!), grocery shopping, burnt crock pot meal (so yucky), falcon webcam, and I could go on but I won't.

Moving forward... this weekend is the annual Flowertown Festival and I'm pretty excited to go.  I'm determined to pick up some handmade crafts for the house.  Then tomorrow we are attending a family friend's picnic.  He does it every year around this time in memory of his wife who died of cancer, everyone who attends can make a contribution to the American Cancer Society.  I believe this is the 10th one and I've been to all of them.

Monday and Tuesday we are having a little meeting/conference at work so I get to be out of the office for 2 days! Woot woot! Of course I have to do a presentation and I could barf about that.  Hate public speaking.  Hate! But I need to suck it up and get over it.  Can't be scared forever.

I will be at work Wednesday.

We have a half day Thursday and then we're off Friday and Monday, so that's a super nice long weekend for me! Love working for the Catholic Church!  Holidays, holidays and more holidays! I think I'm making Thursday a full day off though, gotta love 5 (FIVE!!!) days off in a row.

Of course there is Easter, a holiday I enjoy because it's a calm holiday.  Yeah you cook and go to church, but there isn't the mad dash to get gifts wrapped or 400 pounds of food prepared.  

Oh! And some really really great news! All of my "all work and no play" has paid off! I have been invited to 2, I repeat 2, academic honor societies! Well, invited and accepted.  Alpha Sigma Lambda which is a national honor society for adult learners, it recognizes that we do more than just go to class, we have jobs, families, etc.  And Psi Chi which is the international honor society for psychology! I'm psiched! Hehe, get it? Ok, wasn't funny...

So that's all I've got right now.  Stay tuned for Shot Tales tomorrow (if I remember).

Friday, March 30, 2012

Finally some Friday fun...

Winding down with some Follow Friday Fill-in Fun with Hilary and friends at Feeling Beachie.


1. I loved to sleep late as a kid and still do.
2. I drive pretty well.  That's my opinion anyway... never gotten pulled over so I guess that's a sign.
3. I am currently reading Cross Country by James Patterson.  Been reading it for about 3 months now... stuck.
4. I wish I could instantly have a body like I did when I was 18.  It's actually my motivation picture for my weight loss kick.  And trust me, I'm well aware that at 30 it's not likely I'm going to look like a teenager again, but I'll take what I can get!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Shot Tales: Budapest

Today's installment of Shot Tales comes from Budapest!

No, I have never been to Budapest.  Sadly I haven't left the country yet, but I know someone who went!!

This was about 5 years ago, I hadn't been working at my job for long when a girl, SF, working in another department was going on a trip to Europe.  I didn't know her well but she was a sweetheart.  I jokingly said, "get me a shot glass."  I didn't know they had souvenir shot glasses in Europe and I certainly didn't expect her, someone I barely knew, to get me one.  

But she returned and with her was this pretty little Budapest shot glass.  I asked to let me pay for it, it was the least I could do, but she said heck no, it was a gift.  Like I said, she was a sweetheart.  

She went on to bigger and better things after that and I worked with her for less than 6 months, but I'll never forget her kindness!! It's amazing how people can be in your life for what seems like 5 minutes and yet you'll remember them forever.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Tell Me About Yourself Award

I am honored to receive this award from Nani @ The Chronicles of Nani.  

How exciting!! I do feel like a bit of a turd though because I've been so missing in blogland lately.  So much has been going on and I've been so tired.  I feel like all I'm ever doing is making excuses.  So with all that in mind, I appreciate this award so much!!!! Thanks Nani!!

Rules: First, you must thank the person giving you the award - thanks Nani!! Then list 7 things you think people would find interesting about you.  And pass the award to 7 more people!

1. I love to sing in the car - when I'm alone.  If a good song comes on I will sing and dance.

2. I can "name that tune" to just about every Billy Joel song within the first few seconds of the song.  My sisters and I used to play name that tune with Billy Joel.  I will never forget the one song that had me stumped... Big Shot.

3. If I love a movie I can watch it over and over again, in the same day even.

4. Before my shot glass collection I had a key chain collection.  I loved it.  I lost it.  They were ALL connected too, I had at least 50, probably more.  I think someone stole it or something because that's just not something you drop somewhere and miss, it was huge.

5. I store my candles in my linen closet.  I have tons, some that are over 8 years old.  They still smell great and I hate to burn them because I feel like I should save them for something special.  Right...

6. I love having home parties... like Pampered Chef, PartyLite, and 31.  I just feel like I'm exhausting my guest list if I do more than one a year.

7. I love pictures.  I love to look at them, take them, etc.  I don't care if they are mine or someone else's.  They are just so much fun to look at! They tell stories and I love stories.

My 7 - I know this award is going around so I'm sorry if you've been hit twice! Feel free to not post a second time! :)

1. Hilary @ Feeling Beachie
3. Lauren @ Souls to Squeeze
5. Leslie @ Time Out for Mom
6. Marti @ Marti's Musings
7. Joseph @ Joseph's Real Life

I gave this to you all because I love reading your posts and seeing your pictures!!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Follow Friday Four Fill-in Fun

Hi everyone!! I feel so behind and out of the loop, I'll be spending the evening catching up!

Here is some Friday fill-in fun...

1. I love to smooch on my pets when I need a pick me up.

2. No matter how hard I try, I just can't not care.

3. Brad makes me feel all warm and fuzzy.

4. I can't resist a sale on nail polish.  I don't shop for it often, but when I'm in the drug store, I can't stay away.

Head over to Hilary's to link up, I did!!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Enjoyed spring break, can't believe it's over...

Last week was a whirlwind.  

It started out with a cruise in the Challenger last Sunday, we ended up downtown and had dinner at Fleet Landing which was delicious.  They have awesome seafood and a really nice view if you're fortunate enough to sit on the deck, which we were not.

We had a date night this week too.  Dinner at Applebee's (saying that reminds me so much of the movie Couples Retreat - I'm glad I found the person I want to go to Applebee's with) and then we went to the movies and saw The Vow.  It was pretty good, I like movies that are based off of true stories.  

I avoided the classroom and the computer pretty much all week long which is absolutely amazing! Getting back to the routine this week has not been fun.

St. Patrick's Day was busy! It started off with my sister-in-law's baby shower, we had a great time.  Everything was absolutely gorgeous, we did a pretty good job if I don't say so myself.  My mother-in-law, sister-in-law-in-law :), and a friend put it together.  As much fun as it was, there was so much prep! I was so glad when it was finally underway for that reason alone!

Later that evening we went to Madra Rua, the bar we had lunch at a couple weeks back and had a couple of drinks to celebrate the day.  It was fun and I think it was a pretty good way to end spring break.  

Oh wait, Sunday was a better day because that's the day I got corned beef and cabbage at my parents' house!

Last, happy birthday to my brother-in-law Chris! The one in Cali, not SC.  :)

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Shot Tales

This week's installment of Shot Tales takes me down to Kissimmee, Florida.  A place I've been thinking of a lot in preparation for this summer's trip.  I can't wait for a real out of town break.

The first glass is of a particular part of the resort we visit, River Island.  It's a whole lot of pool and water fun and relaxation.  The image on the glass is an actual picture of River Island.  I can feel the heat of the summer sun now.

The second glass I got the first time I went with Brad and his family to Orange Lake Resort.  This was in 2004 I believe.  Oh, it was so much fun!

The story is, Brad's family own a time share at Orange Lake in Kissimmee.  It's a great resort with so much to do on the property itself, you have little reason to leave.  It's also a stone's throw away from the Magic Kingdom.  Brad and I have missed a couple of the annual trips here and there due to work issues, but we are very fortunate to have the opportunity to take a near free vacation every year.  

With all the stress from school and work, I have been dreaming about this summer's trip for weeks.  I want to sit at the pool all day, every day, sipping fruity drinks and reading books.  I wish I could leave today.

Our trips to Orange Lake are usually very similar.  We hang out by the pool, at the resort restaurants and bars, we go to Downtown Disney, maybe one of the parks, the outlets, etc.  On my trip the year before last, I got to see my good friend NM.  It was great.

So there isn't really a particular story related to these glasses, there are many stories related to the trips.  I can't wait for this year's trip so I can share them!!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Follow Friday!

I can't believe I haven't posted since last weekend.  It has been a heck of a week, will update soon I promise.  I'm thinking a long post is due over the weekend or early next week.  Spring break has been mildly kind and sadly, this is my last week day of it.  Boo.  But now for some Friday fun...

1. I get my best ideas when I'm trying to go to sleep or when I'm in the shower.

2. When I am stressed I am nearly useless.

3. When I have a cold, I like to curl up under a blanket and feel sorry for myself.

4. Watching a spider move, can be terrifying.  I am such an arachnophobe! According to Mozilla spell check, that's not a word. :)

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Shot Tales

What a week!

Today I am featuring four glasses from my collection.  As I was deciding which one glass to feature, I chose one and realized that if I picked that particular one, I would have to do this other one too because it's the same story.  Oh, but wait... if I did those two I'd have to pick these other two because, again, it's the same story.  So that is how four shot glasses came to be part of today's shot tales, and why there may be some other multiples in the future.

These glasses will tell the story of my first Nascar race, the Pepsi 400 at Daytona back in July of 2005.  As a New Yorker I never once imagined I'd end up at a race track.  Heck, I never once thought I'd live south of the Mason Dixon line, but things change.  My husband inherited his love for Nascar and all thing racing through his dad, including an undying love for Dale Earnhardt.

Brad and I were invited to go to this race by dear friends of mine, M-M and A.  I've known M-M for what seems like forever, we went to high school together back on Long Island.  She and her husband, A, moved to Florida just before I moved to South Carolina.  We had an amazing fun time that weekend.

We lucked out with tickets to the Busch series race the night before the Nextel Cup race, I know the names have changed but that's what they were back then.  I have actual photos of this event too, not digital pics, otherwise I'd share them on here now.  It was so amusing to me.  I had watched some of the races on TV with Brad, but nothing compared to being there in person.  We had excellent seats too, right near the start/finish line for both races!

The first thing I noticed when we got to Daytona was ALL the people! It was amazing.  So amazing.  The town basically shut down for anything other than Nascar.  I distinctly remember a Target parking lot was used as a paid parking lot.  I can't remember exactly what parking lot we parked in, though believe it or not I do remember what it looked like, it was a smaller shopping center and there were trees.  There were people everywhere, oh and did I mention that it was HOT? July + Florida = scorching!

Once at the racetrack it was even more amazing.  It looked like a fair or festival with food, merchandise, and promotional vendors everywhere.  The "booths" were like the tractor trailer containers painted all fancy with the drivers' numbers, pictures, and sponsors.  There were so many colors, it was really neat.

The Friday night race was fun.  It was loud and exciting.  The wrecks were pretty neat to see live too.  I remember ended up going the wrong way on pit road on it's way to the garage and I actually got a picture of it going the wrong way and a car beside it going the right way, pretty cool.

Well go figure, it rained on Saturday night! Fortunately they never cancelled the race, but boy was it delayed! I don't think they started racing until 11:00 PM and the race wasn't over until well after midnight.  We bought some tacky yellow ponchos to keep try.  I have to say the rain was a nice break from the sunburn we had acquired Friday and Saturday.  It was pretty cool to see the trucks go around the track with the jet engines drying it off.  They were really, really loud though.

Tony Stewart won that race and I remember the flag guy was to our left and Tony climbed the wall and took the flag from him and it was so close! So very neat to see.  (I think if you count how many times I have said "neat" in this post, there would be a lot!)  

Anyway, it was a really fun weekend and my first of two Nascar races so far.  I had a great time with Brad and my friends and ever since then (holy moly it was almost 7 years ago!) we have been talking about getting together for another one.

So glass number 1 represents the race itself, the Pepsi 400.  I loved the red, white, and blue of it since it was 4th of July weekend.  The fireworks at the end of the race were awesome too - I love fireworks.  Glass number 2 was a gift from M-M and A.  Glass number 3 represents the track.  And glass number 4 was one that Brad just had to have.  So while it may seem excessive to acquire four shot glasses from one location, they're all different, and each special in their own way.

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Slow down!

Can we please pretend that time is frozen so that I can catch up in blog land?

I feel so out of the loop.  When I logged on last night to participate in some Follow Friday Fun, I realized I have missed SO many posts from my reading list this past week.  It makes me so sad because when I finally get to read the posts, I'm so overwhelmed by the quantity that I don't feel like I can properly comment.  

I know, I know... I need to stop this whining trend I'm on and get a grip! 

One paper down, still have to do part of my group paper, a midterm, a discussion question, and I know I'm missing something... fantastic.

My head is in the books now! 

Friday, March 9, 2012

Follow Friday Four Fill-in Fun

This week has totally escaped me! I can't even believe it's Friday!!

1. Given the choice to do volunteer work for free I would do something with animals.

2. When I watch The Food Network it always makes me want to cook/bake/eat.

3. When I have people over I always make dessert, it always knocks 'em dead!

4. I always feel like I accomplished something when I clear something.  Like my counters, dishwasher, laundry basket, desk or inbox.

Head over to see Hilary @ to link up!
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