13 Feb

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10 Feb

Just a quick reminder/ask to vote for Becky’s husband, Ben to help him win a contest and jumpstart his career. Do it! What are you waiting for?  Go to this link. Click on “Support Ben,” via the Facebook button. The website will email you when to vote; both views and votes count! Thank you in advance for your help and support.

 I’m kind of in a happy, bubbly place lately thanks to, well, loving life and everything and everyone around me (and well, the fact that many of my friends have awesome happy, bubbly things going on for them) so I’m sharing some of my favorite quotes and sayings I’ve stumbled across lately….



What’s inspiring you lately?


9 Feb

**** Before I share my Florida trip, I have a shameless plug for Becky’s fabulous husband, Ben! He has entered a contest that could really help his career and get his artwork in front of the right people. In Ben’s words: “The winner gets flown out to pretty much the biggest comic book convention and introduced to all the bigwigs in the comic book, video game, and toy/statue industry which will jump start my career in comics and everything else!  I am so freakin’ excited about this it’s not even funny!  The voting ends on the 14th so it’s a very limited time in which to decide the winner so everything has to be a concentrated effort.  Thank you so much for the support.” So how can you help? Go to this link. Click on “Support Ben,” via the Facebook button. The website will email you when to vote; both views and votes count! *****

So, Florida.

Apart from the chaos that ensued before we actually got there (in a nutshell: Knight’s flight getting canceled, him having to juggle to get on my flights out of StL, dealing with a flat tire in the ghetto of STL, arriving at 1am) and the fact that we got no sleep the night before (hooray for 24 hour amazing breakfast places to kick off the trip), our first vacation was totally ah-mazing.

There was nothing but hugs, love, laughs, holding babies (hers, not mine… duh!), drinking, eating our way through North Florida, laughing some more, watching ridiculous reality TV (hello, Jersey Shore. Nice to meet you, finally. And I may be hooked.)

There was not lovely weather by any means but it was still warmer then this stupid midwest. Like by a lot. And it rained, warm rain. The good kind of rain, you know?

I wore flip-flops and short sleeved shirts. I slept in. I cuddled with Knight and my niece. I sat with my childhood BFF (she needs a nickname, seriously) and laughed, smiled and cried over the pictures and memories of us from the last five years. We hung with my niece and had good life chats. We sat in silence at times and it was more than ok.

I put my toes in the sand despite the insane fog that was covering the Jacksonville beaches. I had to talk to a cop in order to get into the bar since I was a dunce and left my license at home (it worked). I took shots to celebrate my childhood BFF’s birthday, the attainment of my Masters, and friendship and love in general.

Future trips were planned. Tears were shed when it was time to leave. Bonds were strengthened. Knight and I spent five days and six nights together; the most in a row since we’ve met one another and were left hungry for more.

My soul is rejuvenated (again). My heart is soaring (still). There is a smile plastered to my face (like usual). I’m in love with Florida all over again. I fell more in love with myself, with Knight, with life.

When was the last time you fell in love with yourself, your life, your loved ones all over again?

Icethensnowmaggedon, anyone?

2 Feb

So there is currently the Snowmaggedon (or Icethensnowmaggedon if you live in StL) going on outside my window as I write this post. Schools are closed. Business are closed. People are freaking out, myself included because I really, really want to be on my plane to Florida tomorrow morning with very little delays.

And because I worked from home yesterday, couldn’t really go outside without sliding around and because I’m totally preoccupied with about 100 other things,  I leave you with a most random list of things on my mind this Wednesday…

* I’m super excited that John Corbett is going to be on Parenthood, even if he’s playing a “bad” guy, even if he’s only going to be on for a few episodes. He was one of my first celebrity crushes thanks to Northern Exposure and he’ll always have my  heart, no matter his role. So bring it, Parenthood. I’m ready for some new John Corbett.

* There are still days even six months after I’ve been done with my Masters program that a) I miss it and b)I feel like I’m forgetting to do something.

* I have found the reading bug again. I forgot how addicting it can be, especially when you find new authors and characters to identify with. I may or may not have picked up more than one of Adriana Trigiani’s books at my favorite used book store on Saturday during Lisa’s visit.

* I am really, really sick of hearing about people’s illnesses and the weather. There are bigger issues out there people! Much. Bigger. Issues.

* On that note, if you are sick, don’t come to work, even if it is “just a cold.” You can still spread those! And the rest of us at the office do not want it.

* I can’t quite fathom that for the next five days (well, really four, Monday is mostly a travel day), I’ll be in warm weather. Like 70 degree warm weather. I don’t even know what to pack it’s been so long since I could think about warmth…

* The Crate & Barrel Best Buys Catalogue is danger. I repeat: danger! Do not open it. You’ll want every single thing in the catalogue if you are like me. I’m resisting the urge to buy adorable bowls, various pillows, and other assorted home decor items. But I really want to.

* I will be going to visit my brother in six weeks; I’m super excited to see him! Bonus: Knight is coming too, so I get to show him around my campus, get some much needed brother/sister time and pretend I’m 21 again for a night or two. (Probably just one night knowing me.)

* This might be my new favorite song (thanks to Lisa for introducing it to me this past weekend… I apparently need to listen to more Top 40 hits!)

Lessons Learned: Soulful Weekend

1 Feb

Bright and early on Saturday morning I picked up Lisa at a very packed airport (I think everyone was trying to flee this ridiculous weather are getting), greeted her with a classic Midwest Bear Hug, and we were off! This trip has been planned for only a month but it seemed like a long time coming; I think this past weekend was something we both needed: lots and lots of girl time.

Here are some of the things that I learned this past weekend:

* Apparently Mother Nature is nice and graces us with her lovely presence (as in 45 degrees and sunny) for special out-of-town guests. This will lead you to shedding your coat in favor of feeling a bit springlike. Don’t be too fooled, though. The weather will change after the sun goes down.

* Getting to the zoo within 30 minutes of them opening? Best idea ever. No lines to see the penguins!

* You know a lot more about the history and culture of your city than you think, but you always forget the Arch is 630 feet tall.

* Sitting on your bed, magazines askew, Generation X music on in the background? Reminds you both of high school, the days you couldn’t drive, and it is SO much fun. Nothing like just relaxing and being girls for a bit, no worries about driving, bills, plans, boys, nothing beats it!

* Celebrity gossip and looking at fashion is fun at any age. You’re also reminded of why you and Lisa are such good friends: your thoughts and tastes are incredibly similar.

* You might get totally giggly and say something like “smokes like a fish,” when you really meant “smokes like a chimney.” This will become a running joke for the rest of the weekend.

* Introducing your boyfriend to one of your best friends is really fun, especially when they like each other and get along really well.

* Mexican and margaritas is more fun when you’re celebrating a friend’s early birthday (and when the margaritas go down very easy).

* There are some bars in St. Louis that would be ideal for numerous episodes of “What Not to Wear.” We found one of those bars. We also think we should have a stack of Vogues to hand out to people who need some fashion advice.

* Chatting over a delicious breakfast with no agenda on a Sunday? Divine.

* Colin Firth is amazing and dashing, even when he’s playing a King with a speech impediment. (In other words, go see “The King’s Speech.”)

* Sex and the City is a lot funnier than you remember it being; so fun to watch it with a true fan!

* Spinach & feta stuffed chicken breasts are really good; maybe it’s the company (your parents + Lisa), the wine, and the fact that you were totally relaxed, but the recipe is definitely a keeper.

* When going to THE custard place of St. Louis, it’s probably a wise idea to call before you go, just in case they are closed for the season. (Lesson learned the hard way.)

* Sometimes the best weekends are the ones where you put down the camera and only have a few photos to share!

* You are incredibly thankful for the blog world and the best friends it has brought you and you will always wish they lived much, much closer to you.

* It is way more fun to drop a friend off at the airport when you know you’ll see them again soon!

* Fact: You need much, much more girl time in your life than you’re currently getting.

5 Minutes: January

31 Jan

Rather than doing my monthly obsession posts like I did last year, I plan on doing a little bit of “reverb” at the end of every month. I’m borrowing this idea from the #Reverb10 folks and will be taking five minutes each month to write down all the things I don’t want to forget about the month that just passed.

♦ Laughing hysterically while doing Just Dance with my mom (and getting a serious arm/shoulder/back/ab workout in the process. Seriously!). ♦ Teaching Knight’s girls to blow & catch kisses; then watching them do it from the window of his house when I had to leave. ♦ Two snow days ♦ Reading over 1500 pages in January and loving every single one of them. ♦ Recommitting to my health and fitness, feeling the soreness in my body and knowing that I’m doing the right thing and something I love. ♦ Making big, huge, adult life decisions. ♦  Fabulous girl/best friend weekend with Lisa (more to come on that!) ♦ Video chats with amazing friends. ♦ Allowing myself a bit more me time and a bit less everyone else time. ♦ The shock and surprise on my face when I saw that two kids put a bag of dog poop, on fire, on my parents front porch. ♦ Late night dates with Knight full of smiles and love, hope and joy. ♦ Finishing up my two vacation days from 2010, which meant two Fridays off in a row. ♦ Putting together creative and comfortable outfits that express who I am. ♦ Feeling positive, optimistic, excited and very much like myself. ♦

What do you want to remember about this past month?
What are your hopes/goals for the next month?

Notes to Self

28 Jan

Hi Self,

Just a few friendly reminders…

Don’t get too caught up in the everyday. Silly things like long commutes to work, ice on the windshield, forgetting to put earrings in? Small potatoes compared to the bigger picture.

Continue to embrace those people and things that you love; remember how delighted and engaged you feel during your creative writing class, connecting with other like-minded individuals, sharing books to read, writing prompts, feeling like you belong to a group? Do more of that. Remember how you feel when Knight wraps his arms around you after being apart for a few weeks. Remember how great it is to live with your parents, two people who would do anything for you since it’s all going to change soon; they are amazing forces in your life.

Really push yourself at the gym. It’s totally worth it and you know it. Enjoy the running high, the sweat dripping down your face, pounding it out on the dreadmill, rocking out to really hardcore rap. Sign up for a few races soon, use that Groupon for the Yoga classes and treat yourself right. You deserve it.

Never underestimate the power of a good night’s sleep… you’ve treated yourself to some much needed quiet time this week (read: Saying NO to social engagements) and it’s done a world of good for you. Do it more often. Your friends who are your true friends will understand and still be there for you.

Be present. I know things are topsy-turvy for you right now to a degree, but you can only do so much planning for the future. You know what John Lennon said (“Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans,”) and you know he’s right. Your life is NOW. Enjoy it, you only get one shot at it.

It’s ok to ignore the pile of laundry growing in your closet, the unmade bed, and bathroom that needs to be cleaned every once in awhile. Chances are it means you’re doing something more meaningful and that’s a good thing.

Love hard. I know you’re good at it but just don’t forget to keep doing it. Love your family, your friends, Knight. They are all deserving. Let those walls come tumbling down and just fully embrace love. You know you want to do it. You know you can do it. And you know what will happen when you do.

And above all? This:

 You’ve really been yourself lately (well, ok, for many, many months now) and it shows. Just don’t forget to always be true to you.

What would your notes to self say today?