Sunday, April 29, 2012

Green Jeans Lead to Awesomeness

A strong desire to go on a fun date, no idea as to what fun things are happening, no babysitter in place and some killer green jeans that need to make their debut leads to one determined lady! 
Thursday afternoon our awesome neighbors and great friends said they were free and would love to babysit J-man!  Hannah and Willie, you rock

I slipped in my killer green jeans, black slinky shirt, black wedges and funky New Orleans earrings with no set in stone plans, but a strong desire to dance, dance, dance! 

To start the night off, we went to a guest dance party at Arthur Murray on Friday night with a feature dance by the wonderful Katie & Taras. It was a blast! Ryan and I are starting to get the hang of dancing to a variety of song, with different tempos. We aren't great by any means, but we are waaaay better than we were in January. 

 Now that you have had not one, but two sneak peaks at the green jeans, what do you think?  Too much?  Just right?  I receive a ton of compliments on them which only made me love them even more! 

After our dance party, we went to a local bar that normally has live music.  Well, we were in luck because not only was their live music, but it was live 80's music!  I looked like I planned my outfit!  It was so much fun!  I sang my heart out, danced in place and absolutely loved every minute of it! 

She was the best female vocalist and this Billy Idol impersonator was amazing!  I think he sang every song to me and it was glorious!  Ryan was like...jeez dude.

It was a spur of the moment date night gone extremely right!  Ahh...I love nights that turn out to insanely and unexpectedly fun!  Mission accomplished.

Much love.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Nerdtastic

A little over a week ago I received an email from the Director of the MA Economics program at ODU.  It simply stated, "Are you in town?"  A little odd, but I responded with a bit more wordy response to let him know yes, in fact I am in town and employed and doing well, blah, blah, blah.  I have a hard time keeping things short and to the point although this new job of mine is improving my terseness via email. A week or so goes by and I receive a phone call from the director.  He informs me that I have won the "Outstanding Economics MA Student" for the current year!  I jump with joy and quickly realize what a complete nerd this makes me...and I love it!

The ceremony was this past week and it was very nice.  Most of my professors showed up and chatted with me.  I fell in love with the world of academia all over again.  I need. MUST. be a professor one day.  I love school!  In honor of my award, I received this beautiful plaque and a check!  Money, money, money! 


A little side note...Ryan was calling me a nerd and I was admitting 100% to being such and proud of it, when J-man chimes in a tells me "You're not a nerd. Nerds aren't cool like you!"  Whoop!  I'm a cool nerd!  That's pretty sweet!  This little dialogue got me thinking...kids see things so differently.  When J-man thinks nerd, he thinks the nonsocial kid who always has a book in his hand and isn't cool, while I think of an intellectual individual who enjoys learning.  Kids make me laugh!

So, FYI, I have the cutest, most confident, strong, funny, sweet Gramma in the entire world!  Isn't she precious dressed up for the Chicken Dance?!?! 


Gosh, I love her!


Rock it out Gramma! 

Have a rockin weekend, ya'll!
Much love.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Arbonne Facial Party

On this rainy afternoon, I attended a small and super interesting Arbonne Facial Party.  Applying anything more than mascara, eyeshadow and lipstick is uncommon for me, so I was a bit skeptical, but boy-o-boy, I fell head over heals in love with these products!  They are all natural, smell amazing and work wonders.  I have sensitive skin to start with, but now my skin is as smooth as a baby's bottom!  I literally just want to pet my face! 

All of the products are tested on humans with a "no tolerance" clause meaning that if a single person reacts negatively to the product, the product isn't sold. All the products are natural. Over the course of my facial, I had pineapple, kiwi, coconut, berries, and a multitude of other natural ingredients on my face. It was fruity-licious! hehe! They even had items for guys! The "Sky" cologne smells amazing and it's a competitive price. The "Dreamer" perfume is sweet, but a little expensive for me. In the words of Wendy, "It's soooo Awesome!"

The products aren't cheap, but they are quality and you don't use much at all with each application.  If you are interested in learning more about the products offered by Arbonne, check out this website: http://rhythmdancer.myarbonne.com.  I am currently in my trial period, but I know I will be placing an order soon!

P.S. Wendy is also one of my dance instructors!  She is amazing and awesome!

Much love.

Adult Day in March being Posted in April...


That's me.

A little over a month ago, Ryan and I went out for the day.
This lovely little family restaurant came complete with old books, a bar and of course a breathalyzer.  Yes, you heard me right.  You stick a straw in the machine and blow!  Frankly, I think all bars should have these, but then again, they could become a liability for the bar owners...   


That's Ryan. 

Pucker up!

We went to the Williamsberg Winery.



Tasting...

Our wonderful guide.



It was a nice day!  I got new clothing at the outlets, toured a winery and tasted wine with my husband and then went golfing and was scared of hitting geese. 

Much love.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Easter Adventures

Easter at my parent's house is always an adventure!  This year we killed a rooster...that was a first, but it was also an adventure!  We had 25 people over and went on a looong Easter Egg Hunt in the woods!  The bunny was a little adventurous this year with his hiding. 

Let the hunt begin...

Some littles walked...
Others rode on shoulders...

Game faces were worn...with pretty dresses...


This is one of my favorite views.  It was a large group of cousins, siblings, parents, nieces, nephews, second cousins, in-laws...it was glorious! 


The bunny sent us down hills, across plains, into creeks and back up hills!


My nephew was an intense little bugger!


Gramma was proud of the gathering!  She had a whole slew of daughters, grand children, great grand kiddos, in laws and loved ones there!  She was in all her glory!  It was precious!


After a long hike and big dinner, what's better than a tire swing?!


And swinging upsidedown!  Cool Aunt Sarah taught him that!  Yea, I'm cool like that!  The responsible part of me told him to keeps his hands on the handles. 


After a fun day, we drove 5 hours home. 

Much love.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Espresso

My new afternoon pick-me-up is an espresso made by yours truly!  Working for a coffee company sure has its perks, such as fulfilling my dream of being a barista! 


And the purple mouse is courtesy of my boss who's always looking out for me!  It's the little things that make my smile.

Work is going well...really well.  It was a rough beginning for me, but I am getting into the swing of things, understanding the dynamics of the company, and slowly making a name for myself.  It's challenging in ways I wasn't anticipating and I am able to use my knowledge of economic forecasting and trend analysis, which is a glorious to me!

Much love.   

Much love.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Bloom

I have been a reading machine lately and it is absolutely glorious!  Escaping in between the pages of a book calms my soul and inspires my imagination.  While I have been reading a wide repertoire of books, the one I'd like to focus on is by a first time author, photographer, mother, wife and fellow blogger, entitled Bloom: Finding Beauty in the Unexpected by Kelle Hampton. It's beautiful. The words and the photography.


Bloom depicts the first year of life as a mother of a beautiful baby girl with down syndrome.  It is an honest encounter. Painfully heartbreaking at times. Hilarious and comical at others. Honest and endearing throughout. 

While I loved the book, I am aware that not everyone will or does.  Kelle is criticized for being idealistic, in denial of the reality of down syndrome, and the list goes on, but I disagree.  I admire her for her honest encounter of her lowest points, her coping mechanisms, her "net" of friends and family, and her process of accepting and embracing her daughter and the down syndrome family she is now apart of. 

If your were to read my book, you'd find a stickynote with the following items jotted on it:
Portrail of her husband (beer, heater)
Old life and new life
Break with Church (I'd respond similarly...sadly)
Lainey loving Nella without hesitation
Admitting what you need might not be what someone else needs...and that's ok.  

To touch on a few points here...Her husband is great!  He is a father and a great one.  The "old life and new life" aspect of the book is something I easily relate to.  Kids change your life dramatically, not in a negative way at all, but rather they change your life, your priorities, the way your think, the way you love; it's quite amazing! Kelle broke from the church after not being accepted because she loved someone that the church didn't accept.  That is horrible. On to a sweeter note, Lainey is a doll!  Kids don't judge, they don't see differences, they are precious and can teach us smart adults a lot.  That's exactly what Miss Lainey does. Finally, when it comes to emotions and life in general, there is a black and white manual.  We all love, hurt, feel, express, cope, and the list goes on, differently.  It's ok.  Be confident in how you feel.

Read this book.  Feel this book.  Love this book.  I did!

Much love.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Busy Has a New Meaning...

Being busy has a new meaning now that I am working.  This is me on my first day of work.  I went out on a ledge and wore my Lime Green glasses!  They are fun...and a little quirky...kinda like me!
These aren't the best photos, but I was asked to take pictures of my outfit on my first day of work and I didn't remember until I was home, so there is a lot of shadowing and I am tired as can be.
I leave the house before Jared gets on the bus and don't get home until after his homework is done. It's sad. I wish I could be a bigger part of his regular routine, but my schedule doesn't allow at the moment. You know what that means? I better make up for it on the weekend! I didn't do a great job last weekend, but this past weekend I think I did a great job! We spent Opening Day today as a family, went to church, went out to dinner and watched The Kid's Choice Awards while eating smores popcorn (Yes, it is as good as it sounds) and talking about who should win and what the "kids" think about so and so!  Let's just say I learned about a little boys thoughts!   It was precious!  He is totally in love with iCarly i.e. Miranda Cosgrove.
She's cute, that's for sure!  More kid news: All the girls "hate" Selena Gomez because she is dating Justin Bieber and "Bieber is their man."  Those are quotes directly from a 10 year old little boy's mouth.  I nearly peed my pants!  Oh and apparently this doesn't start in 4th grade.  It starts in 2nd.  God, help me and all the mothers and fathers and little girls out there. 

Aside from learning about the kid celebrity drama, we spent Sunday outside making bow and arrows, painting rocks, weeding, planting vegetables and flowers, mulching, running through sprinklers, and playing at the beach!
I love my boots.  They are my working boots and they got dirty this weekend!  Below are pictures of my gardens that I worked on.  Remember that we live in a rental so there is only so much that can be done.



There are three tomato plants and two pepper plants so far.  Herbs will be added shortly.

The beach was a blast too!  I didn't take any photos because I was juggling Lira and busy watching and partaking in skim boarding with a boogie board!  Jared got wet and was super stoked!  We both got a little bit of sun and feel and look healthy!  We ended the day with some Easter Egg Dying!  It was a blast!  Neighbors stopped by and we had a random, but super casual and sweet evening filled with laughter, wine and colorful eggs!

Happy Monday!  May the balancing of work and pleasure prevail!

Much love.

Opening Day!

J-man is on The Cardinals for minor league baseball this year!  While, it's not the Phillies, it is the defending World Series Champs 2011 team, so it's pretty cool!  He looks super studly too!
 ...and the age of the fake smile is still alive and well. :)
This is one of my favorite photos!  I was trying to be creative and capture the teams lined up through the fence while also framing Jared.
The made a pretty awesome sign with a lot of help from the female coaches for the Opening Day Parade!
It was a little dreary...spitting rain and overcast...which made for great photography!  I love not having to deal with shadows.  I still can't handle editing them yet. 
He's cute #11!  We love our double-digit midget!!  hehe!  It's his nickname now that he is 10. 

Let the games begin!  Game #1 was a loss, but a huge learning experience for the coaches.  The kids need a lot of practice playing baseball and dealing with runners.  They are allowed to steal this year, so what should be a single can easily become a triple or home run between the stealing and the overthrows.  They had their ups and downs during the game and showed improvement as the game went on.  They'll be better next time I just know it!
Jared played right field for a few innings, 1st base for half an inning and then he played 2nd his favorite position for the rest of the game!  He caught an infield fly and had some great throws!
He loves baseball which makes me happy because I too love the sport!  As long as he is having fun, that's all that matters! 

P.S.  Phillies season opener was today!  They won!  I'm happy!

Much love.