Wednesday, September 18, 2013

For My Dear Friend Jill

Again, I've been a bad blogger. My dear friend Jill admonished me months ago for teasing her with a couple blog posts and then going blog silent. I don't have a cute little baby to brag to the world about though so she should cut me some slack. By the way, Jill, it's been a while since your last post too. I want to see more of that kid!

Anyways, what have we been up to...

I joined Crossfit, I quit Crossfit.
This in no way reflects poorly on Crossfit. It was just really expensive even for just the 3 day a week plan, and I didn't feel that my life was being enriched like it had through other fitness programs. I miss my CG! So now I've been bugging Billy almost daily to sign me up to use the Student Rec Center at WVU so I can go to group classes in the morning. It'll be spin, BodyPump, spin, BodyPump, spin. Pretty excited to get back in to a routine and I've heard good things about BodyPump. Not excited about waking up at 5:30 to make it to a 6:15 class.

We started training for a full marathon, we quit training for a full marathon.
This post is not going so good. Here's the story: We signed up for the Philadelphia Marathon which is scheduled for Nov. 17th. Not two weeks later, Billy was asked by his good friend to come to his wedding on Nov. 20th. Crazy talk! A wedding in the middle of the week?! Well NBD, you can do both. Au contraire, my friend. This wedding is in INDIA! And you can't run a marathon in Philly on Sunday and be in India on Wednesday. At least not easily and flying commercially. Plus, we are getting there early to join in the festivities and do some exploring. SO...

We're going to India!
See this is getting better, we're not just quitting everything. We leave Nov. 13 and get back the 29th. I'm not sure what to expect. I have no idea what to pack. I'm a little overwhelmed. But also very excited. Will definitely have to post about that trip. Please check back around March 2014. I might have gotten around to it by then. No promises.

And I'm still kind of training for a marathon
... but I've lost some steam without an actual race looming on the horizon. Also the general lethargy I've been feeling lately has been a problem. I think it stems from working from home and also not having any other workout regimen (besides running). So maybe I'll be better once I start attending regular classes at the rec. Running a marathon was my new years resolution so I'll feel like an extra failure if I don't get 26.2 in by the end of the year. Thinking about putting on a Sunset Lake Marathon over Christmas (aka the most boring marathon ever, but 13 laps of a 2 mile loop makes water station set-up real easy). Feel free to come cheer me on and run a lap with me. If not this year, you can bet your butt, I'll be signing up for the next spring marathon in the area. After that I'll probably take a break from distance running for a while. Give my knees a break.

We went to Hogwarts!
Fulfilled my muggle dreams and went to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios in Orlando. It was pretty awesome, but I want to go to the real thing. Still hoping for my letter.

We did some gardening.
This spring we planted tomatoes, zucchini, yellow squash, corn, cucumbers, bell peppers and jalapenos. Very ambitious for out first garden. Well our tomatoes got HUGE and then they died before turning red. Big bummer. But we did make some pretty amazing fried green tomatoes. We had squash and zucchini coming out of our ears. I still have some shredded in our freezer. Jalapenos are doing awesome. Our plant is loaded down with fruit and we've already made a batch of jelly. We might try some pickling before it's all said and done. And more jelly (my personal fave).

Still working from home
I've quit job hunting. I've accepted the lonely, long days with only Rumpus for company. Pity me.

Mom and Dad are coming for a visit!
Nov 7-10! Mom's going to put up my Christmas while I pack for India. Then when we get back from India, it'll be Christmas!

And that's about it. Miss all my Texas friends and family. 

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Giving Up My Texas Citizenship- kinda

So today I spent a good hour of my life waiting in line at the DMV.

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First I had to wait in line to get a number, then I had to wait in line for them to call my number.
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Ok enough fun with GIFs. Trying to get into this blogging thing. GIFs weren't a thing when I started this blog. Or not a popular thing anyhow. Hopefully everyone can see them.

So I was waiting at the DMV to get my title and registration switched to WV. I'm so sad to be getting rid of my TX plates, but my registration expired in April so I had to. I was proud to drive around town with my Texas plates. Everyone knew I wasn't from around here. I was from Texas. I feel like I've been a visitor here in WV all this time and now it's all becoming real. I actually LIVE here.

I did pick the prettiest plate they had available to regular folks to lessen the heartache. It cost a little more, but I believe it was worth it.

I thought this one was especially appropriate since Billy and I have become avid backyard bird watchers. We are ready for retirement!

Now I need to figure out some other ways to Texify my car. I have my Longhorn emblem, but that's just not gonna cut it now that I don't have my Texas plates to put it in context. I did get a few suggestions from my work friends.

Any other suggestions are welcome.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

For My Dear Friend Cathy

I doubt anyone reads this blog. I started it a LONG time ago. I don't even remember why. I guess just to document our life, kind of like a diary... That everyone can read?!? Not sure what I was thinking.

So why this post after 2+ years of blog silence? Well, I got an email from my dear friend Cathy!

Who is Cathy?
Cathy was my roommate in college and is one of my best friends even though she's in the Peace Corps in Benin (that's in Africa). I keep up with Cathy on her blog, Treadling In Benin. Cathy is the most unique, adventurous, kind and creative person I know. If you don't believe me just read her blogs. If you don't like sewing or don't have any interest in other cultures, then A) WTF? and B) get outta here. OR C) just wait a minute and I'm sure Cathy will move on to something that does interest you (Dried Fruit Rings are perhaps more up your alley?). Except for the culture part so if you really don't like other cultures, refer to B above.

So I feel like I know all about Cathy and her life in Africa, but the last she heard from me I was living in Texas about to make a big move to WV. I didn't know what kind of job I'd have or where we'd be living. Or anything! So, as any good friend would after so many months of no talk, Cathy emailed me to see how life is going. Since I know all about Cathy through a blog, I'm responding to her in kind. Here you go, Cathy!

Some background: My husband, Billy, got his PhD in December and got a job at WVU in Morgantown, WV. We moved up here just after the new year.

The House
We found the cutest little two bedroom house on Craigslist. I was SO nervous signing a lease without having seen the place in person. I was afraid it was in a bad part of town or surrounded by undergrad party houses (Princeton Review's Top 20 Party Schools). I was also worried about the parking situation because there's not a lot of it in Mo-town. For some reason people don't believe in driveways around here. Everyone parks on the street. And since it's a college town, you can have 4 people living in a house with spaces for 2 cars. So this issue, combined with the fear of being in the wrong part of town was enough to give me serious anxiety. As we drove up to the house for the first time, the GPS took us through some really windy and skinny streets to get there and my heart about dropped a couple times thinking I had made a huge mistake. BUT it turned out perfect!

Our house is on a pretty skinny street, but not super narrow and it doesn't get a whole lot of traffic.

It sits up on a hill so we have a beautiful view from our kitchen and second bedroom (and shower). The only issue with being on the hill is when I go for a run, my only option is to run downhill so the last quarter mile of my run is always straight up hill. But it's good for me!

The house is old, but the owner has remodeled it somewhat. I wish they hadn't covered up the oak floors with laminate, but I suppose they had a reason. The previous renters didn't bother to remove nails and screws from the walls, so I just hung my pictures where there was already a nail. It worked out ok it some places.

We have a great backyard. We feed the birds and the deer eat what the birds drop. I guess it's slim pickin's in the winter. And we're trying to grow a garden at the bottom of our yard where it's flat. Deer are a problem.

We also have an attic AND a basement! Genius! I love storage!

The best part of all is the porch- now that it's warmer!

Winter in WV
So moving to WV from Texas in January wasn't the brightest idea, but we survived. Here's a few pics from our first winter!

Job Situation
My job in Dallas was kind enough to let me work remotely until I found a job in WV. And that's what I've been doing for the past 4 months! I just can not find a job. I've applied to countless jobs, all different types. I've been on a few interviews, even had a second interview at one place, but never got a call back. I do have an interview today and an interview on Monday so maybe one of those will pan out. Working from home isn't too bad though. I got a little stir crazy during the winter but now that's it's spring I kind of like it.

Here's my workspace:

But now that it's warmer, I like to work from my side porch in the afternoon.

AND I can read on the back porch during my lunch break.

I guess I have it pretty good!

Rumpus does too.

Spring in WV
We did a lot of complaining during the winter, but Spring almost makes it all worth it. I've never seen so many so beautiful flowering trees.  We've planted a few herbs and are trying to plant a garden, but the deer keep eating our little plants. Rumpus is learning how to be an outdoor kitty and climbing trees! And the view is even better!

But I do miss those bluebonnets.

And these little guys!

And You! Love you, Cathy!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Out with the Old

For those of you that couldn't manage to come visit us the past two years and for my children so they can see our first home together.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Then and Now

This past year has gone by so quickly! Here's some fun pictures to commemorate our 1 year anniversary!!

Now- our arbor repurposed...

Now- wildflower garden almost as pretty as last year...


Now- it may not look as pretty, but it still tastes good...

Now- had to take this pic ourselves so it looks quite staged...

Now- more to love...

Now- trip to Salt Lake City, UT (SL,UT) for anniversary/ASMS conference...
Happy Anniversary!!!
Can't wait to see where we are a year (or 50) from now!!!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

You're My Cuppy Cake, Gumdrop

Again, several months late, but couldn't help sharing some pics of my precious nephew. Logan was born on February 14, 2009. This will be perfect when he's in elementary school because there will always be cupcakes and a party on his birthday. Not so perfect when he gets older because all his friends will have to take their girlfriends out for Valentines Day. AND if he doesn't have a girl, not only will he be alone on Valentines Day, but he'll also be alone on his birthday! Anyways here's some of my favorite pics.
I think he looks like a little elf in this pic.
He also looks a little like Popeye the Sailor Man to me too.
Aunt Jessie made his first Birthday cupcakes!
On second thought, maybe it's not such a good idea to give him any more cupcakes.
I love him so much!
He's definitely a thinker.
But every once in a while you get a smile!
Happy Birthday, Cuppycake!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Food Inc. and Tierney's Cafe and Tavern

Ok, now I'm done reminiscing and will start blogging about the here and now.

Saturday, the hubby and I spent a VERY lazy day at home watching movies and catching up on TV shows. We must have run out of material because we ended up watching this documentary called Food Inc. It was about where our food comes from. They talked about feed lots and chicken farms which are horrible, but I already knew that. It also talked about how corn in some way, shape or form is in almost everything we eat and some things we don't eat (like batteries). The government basically pays farmers to grow corn and then scientists have to figure out what to do with all the surplus. Which is how we got things like high-fructose corn syrup and all kinds of engineered sweeteners and starches.

The food industry is pretty much controlled by 4 or 5 huge mega-companies. This wouldn't be so concerning if they didn't treat their farmers badly and if they weren't so protected by the FDA and USDA. I'm not nearly educated enough to make an informed decision on this topic as I'm sure the documentary was very one-sided; however, I do think that supporting local farmers, although a small gesture, might make a difference and definitely can't hurt. an effort to be locally conscience, Billy and I chose to eat at a local Lewisville restaurant Saturday night rather than a chain.

We found this great little restaurant called Tierney's Cafe and Tavern. I'm sure they get their meat and produce from the same places the chain restaurants do, but we're taking small steps. It's in a cute little house a few blocks away from Old Downtown Lewisville. One of my favorite things is that they showcase local artists on the walls and every piece of art I saw was for sale. One particular artist kept catching my eye, R'Lene Winters.
The place was packed so we knew the food must be good. And it was! I got the avocado salad and a cup of baked potato soup. Delish! Billy got the prime rib rare, but they were out of rare so he had to settle for medium rare. But that was ok because they gave us a free dessert to go to make up for it. We got the strawberry cream pie at the recommendation of the waitress. O...M...G. I don't think Billy cared for it much, but I am still thinking about it. I am determined to find the recipe and recreate it on my own.

Sunday morning we met some friends for breakfast at the Old West Cafe in Denton. Again very very good. Highly recommend both restaurants! Tierney's also serves Sunday brunch which I'm anxious to try.

Oh and on a side note, we also watched a documentary called Walmart: The high cost of low price. I really don't know where we can shop or what will be left for us to eat if we keep watching these documentaries!