Friday, January 31, 2014

My Life In Winter

Happy Super Bowl weekend!! What are your plans?? I am not really interested in either team playing but I still love getting together with friends to eat and drink so I'm looking forward to it :) Also I am pretty sure that the past two weeks having been the most boring weeks I have had in a while so I am excited to head home this weekend and see Jamal and our friends. 

Yesterday we got dumped on with snow. I didn't even know that it snowed until I left for work at 7 in the morning. Not such a fun thing to find when you don't have time to spare to clean off your car. Not to mention that the roads were just horrible. Nothing had been plowed at all and the snow was still coming down really hard. It was pretty crazy. 

I made chicken quesadillas last week for a friend when she came over for dinner and ever since I have been obsessed with them. They are just so good. And so easy to make! I have been eating them all the time. Knowing me this will last for another couple weeks and then I won't make or eat one for months again. So I guess I'll continue to enjoy them while they sound appetizing :)

I know that this is old news but I loved Sean and Catherines wedding on Sunday. It was great. I loved it. And I love them. I know people say that they won't last but I truly to believe and hope that they do. I really like them. Yes, there were some parts of the 2 hours that were a bit awkward and not necessary ( think cam of honeymoon suite) but for the most part it was fun to watch and it was a pretty wedding. 

The other night I met up with Sally, a fellow MN blogger, for some margs and nachos. It was fun to catch up with her and get to know her better. She lives down by where I go to school AKA a couple hours from the cities which is where most of the MN blogger meet ups take place so I hadn't seen her it on a long time. It was nice to leave my apartment for a reason other than class or work :) 

And that is literally my past two weeks in a nutshell minus class and work. Fun right? Well I hope you have a great weekend!! Watch the Super Bowl!!


Thursday, January 30, 2014

Over Acheivers

Oh Hey Guys!! It's Thursday and I finally decided to show up. Well when it is freezing outside and all you do is work or go to school there isn't much to report. But hopefully with the start of a new month on Saturday the weather will warm up a teensy bit so I can get out and do something fun. But if it doesn't I could happily spend the next week bragging sharing about how I get to see Justin T on FEBRUARY 9TH!!!!! So let's just hope that I start to have more of a life so that I don't have to rub it in that I get to see him and you don't.

I want to say Happy 13th birthday to my little sissy!! She is officially a teenager but the dramatics have been there for years. Here's to hoping my family survives ;) Kidding, kinda.

And now onto today's topic. Over Achievers. The ones constantly raising their hands asking for clarification, asking questions, and asking the most obvious obnoxious just ridiculous things driving everyone crazy.  Are/were you one? Just so were clear I'll say it right away, they annoy me. They annoy almost everyone (teachers included) except for themselves. And I think the ones in college are the worst.

For example. In one of my classes we are working on an assignment.

The OA (That's over achiever by the way): can I see samples of past students graded assignments so I know what you are looking for.

Prof (I always feel weird saying that but it feels right here): no

OA: Okay well how have past students done on the assignment? Whats the average grade?

Prof: It is a difficult assignment, one of the hardest ones.

OA: Can I show you my completed assignment before I turn it in and get your feedback?

Prof: Uh no.

OA: Can I come to your office and ask you specific questions about it?

Prof: Sure that is fine.

OA: Okay and are we graded on writing?

Prof: Well yea...

OA: Okay so then we should take this to the writing center and have it looked over?

Prof:....... (answer is no in case you weren't sure)

I should mention that this is a management class not English, and it is literally a chart with a few words per box, not a twenty page essay.

Seriously kid?? And this is just the beginning. He never stops. I can understand wanting to make sure you understand the assignment so that you are able to do your best but jeez, he goes just a bit overboard. Remember these kids? If you were one I will admit that maybe, possibly, every once in a blue moon you were beneficial to the class but usually not.


Friday, January 24, 2014

I Can DIMyself: State Love Canvas

It is the freakin weekend. I don't know about you but this weekend flew by for me. And you know what? Despite the freezing cold it was actually a really good week. Nothing spectacular happened but I am getting used to my new job and loving and life is just good.

Thank you all so much for your comments on my post yesterday. I truly appreciate you taking the time to comment and to make me feel better about the situation. Your kind and caring words definitely make me feel better :)

And now onto today's craft. Remember that sneak peek I gave you on Monday? Well here are all the details. Ashley and I made these while our guys watched football and here is how we did it.

We got all of our supplies together: canvas, paper, glue, scissors, state cut out, glitter paper, glitter. Then I glued down the background paper onto the canvas. After that I cut the glitter paper into the chosen state using the state cut outs we printed out. And then I glued the state on the papered canvas. I also chose to cut out letters and glitter them then glue those down as well and added some gems for some extra sparkle. This helped to take up some room since the state was so small. And ta-da all done.

Ashley actually chose to paint her background and I love how it turned out. I even kinda like hers better than mine. For now I am calling mine a work in progress because I am not thrilled with how it looks. Hopefully I can figure something out so that I don't hate it and can hang it up. It looks pretty good in this picture but in person you can see that it needs some help.

 It was a fun and inexpensive craft. I may even make another one. And if you weren't sure the Chicago one is mine ;) Enjoy your weekend!!


Thursday, January 23, 2014

Ring Envy

Remember my goals for 2014 and one of them being to get engaged? Kind of weird that I'm the lady and I made it a goal for the year so here is a bit of an explanation.

We just finished up holiday engagement season and it was a tough one. This one was especially tough because the people that got engaged kept getting closer and closer to me (in terms of relationship versus just Facebook friends) and the hardest one for me to accept was my best friend Ashley.

I'm not proud of it but I shed more tears than I'd like to admit over her big news and they weren't the happy ones. More of the feeling sorry for myself kind. And I hated it. I hated everything about how I was and still kind of am feeling. I don't want to be jealous of her happiness or selfish but I was and maybe still am a little bit.

It's hard because truly I wanted to be so happy for her but all I could think about was myself and how I want to be engaged. And I mean deep down I do share her happiness but not on the level that I should have because my own selfish wants were in the way.

Right now the only reason that Jamal and I aren't engaged is financial. It is something that we both want but just are not able to do right now. And watching everyone around me get the one thing that want right now isn't easy. The worst part about it is that I absolutely hate how I feel. I want to be happy for my friends. I don't want Jamal to feel bad and think he can't make me happy. Right now it is just as hard on him because he knows what I want and we just can't do it right now.

I want Jamal to know that he is enough and regardless of the size of my diamond in the end all I want is for us to be together and to be happy. I want so badly to start our forever and to be married. Be a family. It is not just about the ring and a white dress but it is about what marriage is to me. And seeing what I want right in front me just barely out of my reach is difficult and hard to process. Especially when (it seems) everyone else can do it. I know that it will happen in due time, but this waiting period is hard stuff.

So everyday it is getting easier to accept and even be happy for all of my friends recent engagements and I know that mine will come soon. During this waiting period I will just be trying to stay focused on being in the present and happy with where my life is right now while I get to help my best friend plan the biggest day of her life yet.


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Great Minds Think Alike

I love short weeks!! And then to add to the fun I only work one job today and my one class got cancelled. I am so excited to get home just after one and not have to worry about going out in the cold for the rest of the day :) 

So I know that Christmas was a month ago now but I really want to share what me and Ashley got each other this year. We were definitely on the same brain waves. I was so excited to give her my gift! I scoured Etsy for hours upon hours trying to find the perfect "best friend" jewelry. I knew that I wanted something personalized but the options are endless. 

I ended up getting this necklace, one for each of us. It ended up being a lot smaller than I was expecting but none the less I still love it. I was and still am so excited about it! And then to make it even better she gave me a "best friend" bracelet!! I thought it was so crazy that we both had the same idea. There's a reason we are besties :) The bracelet is so cute. I love it. 

Not only were we on the same page but so were the guys. Jamal wrote to C-Dog on his gift to Christian and Christian wrote to J-Dog on his gift to Jamal. So funny. I guess we were all meant to be friends! 


Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Concrete Jungle: What I learned

Okay so I am sure you are getting tired of hearing about my NYC trip but this is the last post, I promise. This will just be a little list of the fun and weird things I learned about New York while I was there. So without further ado I give you...

Lessons in the Big City 
This was one of my roomies wearing all of her tourist gear

Pizza is the cheapest meal you will find anywhere, slices as big as your face for 4 bucks or less. Learn to love it, a lot.

Waterproof boots are a necessity in the winter. As I mentioned here when it snows there isn't really anywhere for it to go so you end up walking through a lot of it.

Every single restaurant has a grade that has to be posted and visible to the public on the outside of the building. These grades measure how good the restaurant rated on how well they follow the health code, it is actually pretty cool to know before you even walk in if you will be eating somewhere that is up to standards. And the good part is that there are so many A restaurants I don't see why you would ever eat anywhere less than that. 

Most restaurants do not split checks. For us in MN it is common every day occurrence to go out to eat and ask for more than one check at a table, apparently not in NYC though. Not sure why, is everyone there super giving and pays for their friends meal regularly?? 

Everyone knows that New York has five boroughs. But what I learned is that when addressing a letter to someone the city you write on the envelope varies by borough. Manhattan is the only one that you address as New York, the other five boroughs you write the name of the borough. Interesting right? Ex. Manhattan would be New York but Queens would be Queens. 

New York apparently has some of the best tap water around. I am no tap water drinker but I always forgot to buy water while we were out so I took a chance and had a sip of theirs and you know what? I didn't die! So I kept drinking it. I survived by drinking tap water. Pretty cool if you ask me. But trust that that practice has ceased now that I am back home. Bottled/filtered water all the way. 
Me and my 3 roomies: Rachel, Jessica, & Katy

And those are 6 simple things I learned from being in New York for a week. Just some little facts. And now I am done writing about my trip, no more recaps until my next vacay which hopefully isn't that far off :)


Monday, January 20, 2014

Weekend Update: Bowling, Birthdays, Crafts

Hey Everyone!! I hope your weekend was a perfect mix of fun and relaxing like mine was. It was definitely much needed after that crazy first week back at school and work.

Friday night I got home and we had intentions of going out but I was so exhausted from the week that we opted to stay in watch some 24 while Colby J had fun taking all the stuffing out of his pillow.

Saturday I skyped with Kate, our exchange student from a few years ago, it was the first time we had done that so it was fun to see her and talk to her face to face versus on facebook. Later in the day our neighbors dog came over. She is usually off leash if he is outside with her so she sneaked away to come over to get some treats and see Colby Jack. She hung out with us inside for about an hour so Colby got in some good play time after being cooped up in the house from the cold.

That night we went out bowling with Cody & Chelsey and a couple of their friends. Then we got some Chipotle for dinner and ended the night with a few more episodes of 24. And something momentous happened; for once Jamal was the tired one and asked to go to bed instead of me!!!!

Sunday we celebrated my mom's 50th in the early afternoon with family. Today is her birthday!! Happy Birthday Mother!! She was very opposed to a big party so small gathering with family it was.

Then Jamal had to finished watching the Patriots/Broncos game and after that we went over to Ashley and Christians so that the guys could watch the second game together while us girls crafted. We made a fun little project, here's a sneak peek come back Friday to see what we made.

And today I was off from school and work so I have some free time to catch up on the rest of the blogs I am behind on and then tonight off to volunteering. I am going to be ending my time volunteering at the Y since my schedule is so busy this semester so I am kind of sad about that.

It turned out to be a really good weekend with a good mix of home time and friend time. Next time I will be home it will be the Super Bowl!!


Friday, January 17, 2014

A New Semester

I have just completed the first week of the new semester and let me tell you it was a busy one. I am now working two jobs down at school as well as going to class and I still volunteered this week. So all of that means I barely had time to sleep much less stop and think for a minute. Thankfully I don't have classes on Fridays and this weekend I happen to be going home and have the entire week off to recover from this crazy week and get ready for the next one.

I only worked one shift at the restaurant this week so that wasn't too bad but I did work at the bank every day. This is how my schedule looked on Monday and Wednesday.

Get up and go to work
Go home and change for class
Go home and change for work/volunteering
Work or volunteer
Go home, do a quick blog post, and sleep

So as you can see I was gone the entire day. Tuesday and Thursday were a little better because I had the evenings free after 5 but still so much to do with it being the first week back.

This schedule is a huge change but I think I am going to like it. It also explains why I can't catch up on blogs!!

Well that's about all that went on in my life over the week. I am ready for the weekend fun to begin. Enjoy your weekend!!


PS I am just weeks away from seeing my love JT in concert again. February 9th can't come fast enough

Thursday, January 16, 2014

NYC The Concrete Jungle Part Three

We have finally made it to the last part of my trip! I am glad that we got so many things in but it was exhausting. Before I start though I would like to say hi to some new visitors/commenters that I have had lately! Thanks for stopping by :) I plan on stopping by all of your blogs soon but I am just so behind on everything right now and am figuring out my new crazy schedule. Things should be back to normal for me in a week or two.

Days 6 & 7

Wednesday we started out at the Museum of Finance. AKA a complete bore. It just wasn't that interesting. It was a small little place. We had a tour guide telling us all about everything but at this point I don't remember a thing about it. And I am pretty sure I wasn't exactly listening all that much at the time.

Well anyway after that we took a quick look down Wall Street, we had already seen it a couple of times but we were supposed to walk around and talk about each of the buildings but it was just so cold that it didn't happen. A few days earlier though we did get to pose with the Charging Bull and hold his man parts for good luck. Then we made our way to the Federal Reserve where we got to go down and look at where all the gold is stored. We couldn't really see much but it was still kinda cool to be able to say we were there. The upstairs area was actually really interesting so that was fun. But again I'd say this is not a must see.

For dinner that night we went to the real Chinatown in Brooklyn and had a nine course Chinese dinner! I am an incredibly picky eater so my favorite part was the fried rice and I didn't try half of the meal but it was still cool to experience. And the managers were really nice they gave all fifty of us a free shot of grey goose and then gave us the rest of the bottle, 3/4th full. Which was gone by the time we got to the hotel. Everyone drank it on the subway.

Thursday was our free day. In the morning we did a marketing activity and went to Crate & Barrel so that they could talk to us about their marketing strategies and it was really interesting but after that the day was free. At this point in the week we were all so tired and everyone was getting sick that most of us just hung around the hotel. And then that evening we ended the trip with going to see Wicked on Broadway. I had never had much interest in Wicked nor did I really know what it was about, but now I love it. I think I may have liked Pippin better but it was really really good.

Friday morning we were off again and on our way back home. It was a long and tiring trip but I am glad that I went. Next time I go though I'll be sure to go with people I know and in the summer :)

Thanks for reading along :) I hope I gave you some good tips on some of the touristy things to see and not to see in New York. So who wants me to visit them?? I am already ready for another trip ;)


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

NYC The Concrete Jungle Part Two

Alright so I left off at the 9/11 memorial...Here we go with days 4 & 5.

We started out Monday morning with a tour of the United Nations. It was pretty cool to learn about but nothing too exciting. After the tour we walked over to Grand Central Station which was pretty exciting to see. We didn't have much time to walk around so it was more of a 'take a few pictures and let's go' stop. But the place is huge and I would have liked to have been able to walk around a bit and see what all there is.

Once we were done there we headed over to the Empire State Building. We did the Skyride which is a virtual tour of New York City in a little theater with the seats that move so it was like we were flying over everything. If you are looking into visiting the Empire State Building I would say that this is a pass. We had already seen everything shown in the video and it just didn't seem worth it. But after that was over we got to go up the observation deck on the 86th floor. It was super windy and I am a nervous Nancy and didn't want to drop my phone but I still got some good shots. It was really cool to look down on the whole city but I may have a slight fear of heights so I wasn't out there long.

Tuesday we got up and went to Madison Square Garden for an all access tour. If you don't know what that is like (like me) it is their sports arena where the Knicks (basketball) and Rangers (hockey) play. It is super nice! All newly renovated. While we were there we even got to see the Denver Nuggets practicing. I am not a big fan of either team so for me the most exciting part bragging to Jamal's friend who is a huge Knicks fan.

When we finished there we had a lunch break before going to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I am actually a big fan of museums but my feet were killing me by this point so it was hard to enjoy. We still did see some cool things though.

After the museum we went back to the hotel to get ready for our first Broadway show!!! I was so excited. We saw Pippin. I had no idea what it was and had heard some not so good things about it but it was amazing! So so good. It was a mix of magic, acrobats, and musical. I don't even know what else to say other than it was one of the highlights of my trip and a must see.

And this is getting a bit long so I will be back tomorrow with the remainder of the trip. And next week I will have a list of what I learned about New York. 


Tuesday, January 14, 2014

NYC The Concrete Jungle Part One

Let's get right to the recap, it's a long one :) Here are days 1-3

So like I said yesterday, the sleeping situations weren't ideal but the daytime was fun. Every single day was so incredibly packed. We saw and visited pretty much all you can in Manhattan. Before all the fun started though we had a plane delay of about two hours due to the snow storm to hit overnight. Not. Fun. This was my first plane delay and hopefully the last. But luckily we made it into NYC by Friday afternoon and still had quite a bit of the day left.

The first thing we did after getting settled in was take a walking tour around our hotel led by our prof. Our hotel was in Times Square and not too far from Central Park. From our walk we quickly learned that a snow storm in New York is much different from a snow storm in Minnesota. In the ginormous city they have no where to put the snow and it just gets moved back and forth from street to sidewalk versus being plowed to some vacant field or a part of a parking lot.

After the early morning of travel I called it a night pretty early to get ready for the long day ahead on Saturday. Saturday we had an eight hour bus tour of Manhattan with a lunch break in Little Italy and a boat tour around the harbor to see the skyline and the Statue of Liberty. Thankfully it was a really clear day out and we could see everything.

To end the day we went to Die Feldermaus, an opera, at the Met. I wasn't quite sure what to expect but it was actually pretty good. The best part was that there were little screens on the back of the seat in front of you with the words, without that I would have been so lost. Even though the story line was interesting it was so so long. All of us cut out at the second intermission around 10:30pm. It didn't actually end until midnight!!

Sunday we actually got to go to the Statue of Liberty. We took a boat over to it and got to go up unto the pedestal of the statue. It would have been way cooler if it wasn't so foggy out. We couldn't see anything. The fun part about being up in the statue is to see the view of the city from there but that didn't out. After the statue we took the boat over to Ellis Island. It is a museum or something about the immigrants coming here. People were initially excited to go but it was kind of a waste of time.

After traveling by boat for the day we walked to the 9/11 memorial. I had been looking forward to this part the most. It was crazy to look at the reflecting pools where two huge buildings used to stand. And to see the roses that are left in names that are engraved on the wall of the pool makes you stop and think about those people whom I had never met nor heard of and how they lost their life in something so tragic. I wish that the museum had been opened but it is still in progress.

So that was the first half of my week in the Big Apple. Stay tuned for the second half. It gets even better! Broadway musicals and a tour of some professional teams locker rooms.


Monday, January 13, 2014

Group Travel- NYC

Hello Friends!! I missed blogging so much while I was in New York. It was such a whirlwind of a trip that I barely had time to sleep. I saw so much and had a good time but am so happy to be back home. I have so much to share about the trip and things in general that I don't know where to begin! So to get it out of the way I guess I will start with the not so fun parts of my trip.

I don't think I ever mentioned but this was a school trip and I didn't know anyone going. I went with a group of students and two professors and the trip was nothing what I imagined it would be. I am going to recap the trip this week but before I get to that I will share the trials of going with a college school group and having to share a bed, yes you read that right, I had to SHARE A BED...WITH A STRANGER. I knew this going into the trip, it was the part I was most nervous about and rightfully so.

If you have never been to New York, the hotel rooms are small. There were four girls to a room with two full sized beds. Awesome right? So not only did I have to share a small bed with a stranger but she was also a pretty large stranger (not being mean just setting the scene) and had a not so pleasant scent to her that got strong by the day. Just my luck right.

Well not only did I have an unfortunate bed mate but it seemed that I went on the trip for a completely different reason than the majority of the group. For all of them it was a week of partying, for me it was to sight see and explore the city-sober so that I could remember and enjoy it. Not only that but I wasn't going to get drunk with people I didn't know in a city that I didn't know. It's okay you can call me a responsible party pooper :) it's a title I am proud to have.

So yea it wasn't quite what I was expecting. And our professors were the most disorganized people I had ever met. But I really am glad that I went! I got to do so many things that I probably would not have done otherwise and I did meet some great people. For the most part it was a great trip and I had a lot of fun for having no idea what I was getting myself into. I will be back tomorrow with the first few days of what I did and some pictures :)


Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Welcome 2014

Happy 2014!! I hope you had a great new years eve and partied it up. NYE is one of my favorite holidays, but sadly this year I sat all alone in my apartment catching up on blogs and scouring pinterest instead of eating snacks and clinking glasses with Jamal. He was back home while I was stuck at school. But I won't let that get me down, I am still determined to have a fantastic 2014.

I am not really into resolutions. But I do have a list of goals I would like to accomplish this year.

A 2014 Bucket List. 

1. Make plans with family members that I don't see often

2. Go to the beach-this may not seem like much but we never go!

3. Get a full time, salaried position in my career path

4. Move into a new home with Jamal and Colby J

5. Get a new car for me-Jamal can have my current one ;)

6. Get engaged-I'll elaborate more on this and my feelings soon

7. Host a party or two in our new home

8. Travel somewhere new alone-happening on FRIDAY!! NYC here I come

9. Travel somewhere new together

10. Graduate

11. Eat healthier and cook meals that can be next day lunches-this is more for when I live with Jamal, right now I'm living on a college student budget and eating a college student diet AKA cheap and easy (chicken strips anyone?)

12. Rebuild my savings

So there it is, my 12 goals that I hope to accomplish this year. A lot of new and exciting things to look forward to. Let the fun begin.

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