Monday, April 30, 2012

What's in your wallet?

Remember when I was doing the "what's in your purse" series?  Well, we're going to momentarily revive that, and boy do I have a treat for you guys tonight! :)  My brother-in-law, Robert, decided to do a little twist on that series, and donated a "what's in your wallet" post!  Here goes!

What’s in my wallet?
Well let’s first start with the wallet itself. It is the “big skinny” wallet that I bought in Charleston, SC at the Flowertown festival. It is leather on the outside and polyester on the inside and thus extremely thin. It is also curved so it can fit nicely in my front pocket. By far it is my favorite wallet ever.
Now to its contents:
·         Allstate Emergency Roadside assistance card (never needed it)
·         Debit card
·         Company credit card
·         Sam’s Club card (I’m getting old)
·         Medical insurance card
·         Allstate Insurance card
·         Hilton Honors card – cause I’m a High High rolla’
·         Dental Insurance Card
·         Georgia Concealed Weapons permit
·         Drivers License
·         A sticky note with Allie and Emma’s Social Security numbers on them
·         Receipts to:
o   Kangaroo Express
o   N. Decatur Chiropractic
o   Nicolas cigar shop in London
o   ATM withdrawal from St James Station in London
o   La Parilla
o   Carrabba’s in Fayetteville
·         My co-worker’s credit card with a description of the type of whiskey that he wanted me to buy him while in London. For the record, Lochan Ora is no longer made!

And that’s it folks! Wish there were some cash in it!
Thanks Julie for the chance to share what’s in my wallet.

When I first saw the picture with the credit cards in it, I was like well...hope my readers are honest people.  But Robert is smart and blurred out the important information. :)  So, sorry you would be identity thieves!  Thank you Robert for being such a great and cooperative brother-in-law.  You're a pretty good high high roller!  
Hope everyone had a great weekend and a bearable Monday!  

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Happy Wedding Day Joyous!

Remember the awesome chick that wrote this post?  Well she's getting married today!!!!  Happy Wedding Day sweet Joy, I know you'll be a stunning bride! 

Me and Joy at my rehearsal dinner

Friday, April 27, 2012

The rest of my birthday weekend

So here's a little bit about the rest of my birthday weekend!  After the race on Saturday, the girls got cleaned up and did a little shopping. I got me these new brown shoes from Bass, because my other brown ballet flats were worn to pieces.  
 We also went and picked up the rest of my birthday present from my parents while we were out and about.  They got me an adorable makeup bag with small detachable bags on the inside that has my monogram on it.   They also got me an awesome expandable cooler with "Helms" on it. I can't wait to use them both!

After that, husband and I got ready to head to a concert in Atlanta.  We were going to see the Punch Brothers at the Variety Playhouse in Little Five Points.  For those of you who don't know who the Punch Brothers are, they are a progressive bluegrass band, whose lead singer used to be the lead singer in Nickel Creek.  We decided to just eat dinner in Atlanta so we could get to the venue as the doors opened.  We got to Atlanta at about 6pm, and the doors opened at 7:30pm.  We figured that we would have plenty of time, but didn't expect that it would take us 30 minutes to find a parking spot.    Evidently there was some kind of festival and Little Five Points was crowded with people! We finally found a parking spot at about 6:30pm and walked down the street to the Vortex Grill where we had planned to eat.  We heard they had good burgers and wanted to try them out.  We walked up to the hostess and gave our name and she said, ok there will be an hour wait.  We were like uh, what?  We definitely didn't have time for that.  So we ended up going to another restaurant called the Corner Tavern.  I ordered a sandwich, and Timothy ordered a burger, thinking that those items would be quick to make.  Well, we finally got our food at about 7:15pm.  We immediately asked for the check, since we only had 15 minutes until the doors opened.  I don't think I have ever eaten a turkey sandwich so fast.  I think it was good?   I couldn't really tell because I was eating it so fast,  I didn't really taste anything.  But the nice server didn't charge us for our Cokes, I guess because it had taken so long to get our food and he could tell we were in a rush.  
We got to the venue right at 7:30.  Last year when we saw the Punch Brothers at this same venue, there were only maybe 20 people in line.  Well, this time the line was stretched down the road.  There must have been 150 people in line.  We were shocked.  Evidently the show was sold out, for the first time.  I guess they're just more popular now?  I'm glad that more people are appreciating their music now, but it kind of takes away from the intimacy of the concert when there are so many people there.  When we finally got inside, we darted up the stairs to the balcony, and were glad to get the same seats on the front row of the balcony that we had last time.  Neither of us like standing up close to the stage at concerts, and don't like sitting on the floor because the standers are always blocking your view.  So the balcony is the perfect place for us. 
The show started with a solo act, Jesca Hoop.  We both thought that she had nice vocal control, but didn't really like her style of music.  She sounded like a combination of Imogen Heap and Regina Spektor.  The Punch Brothers went on at about 8:30pm and played for a good hour and a half.

Just like last time, they were absolutely wonderful.  Each of the musicians are so good at their instruments and they just play so well together.  You can tell that they can anticipate exactly what the other musicians are going to play.  They played all but 3 songs from their new album, and a good few from the last album.  Timothy and I both picked a song that we thought would sound the best live before the show started, and we were both excited to hear that song to see if we were right.  And they didn't even play it!  We were so disappointed and said we didn't need to do that next time, because we probably jinxed it.  One of my favorites from the night was a cover of "Just What I Needed" by the Cars.  Here's a video of them playing it.  Please please please click on that link.  It won't let me put the video directly on my blog, but following the link is definitely worth it.
Even if progressive bluegrass is not your thing, I definitely recommend seeing them live in concert.  They put on such a good show, and I feel like anyone could appreciate their musical ability even if they didn't really like the style.  Add to this the fact that all of these gentlemen are under the age of 35, and you really develop a respect for what they are able to produce with their instruments.

We spent the night at my parents house again that night, since the concert got out so late.  Sunday afternoon we met my parents, sister, niece, and my grandparents at Olive Garden for a little birthday
lunch.  We all love us some Olive Garden, and it definitely didn't let us down! 
I also got some more birthday presents, which was awesome!  My sister got me a Le Creuset casserole dish and a really pretty bracelet that Emma picked out.  
 I'm starting to get a pretty good collection of Le Cresuet stuff actually.  My mom got me the little orange dishes for Easter, the vintage orange casserole dish and white pie bird for Christmas; my sister got me the blue oval dish and blue loaf dish; and Timothy got me the green dutch oven.   
My grandparents gave me a really cool car pen that actually rolls and has doors that open!  They gave me some moolah too, which always makes this girl happy!  
 Also, I forgot to mention in my last post, that the Helms family got me some books I had been wanting, and a nice Colombia polo that I've already worn twice since I got it! The Pioneer Woman cookbook is already a favorite and makes me drool every time I open it.  (The shirt is in the wash, so I couldn't get a picture of it)
We headed back towards Cairo that afternoon and were able to kind of wind down that night before the week began.  I definitely think it was a successful birthday. :)  Thank you to everyone who made it so wonderful!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Ready, Y.E.L.L, Run!!!

Friday we left Cairo to begin the long trek up to Henry County at about 5:00pm.  We decided to just wait until Perry to stop for dinner, which was a good decision, because then we got to see husband's mother and sister.  We ate dinner at Chick-fil-a and it was actually mother-son night there, so that was pretty fitting.  Timothy asked me if I was sure I wanted Chick-fil-a for my birthday dinner and I told him it was either that or Taco Bell, and for most involved, Chick-fil-a is a much better choice.  He definitely agreed. :)  After eating, we continued the drive up to Henry County and got there at about 9:00pm.  My parents let me open up one of my presents that night.  They got me some pretty pillows I had been wanting for my bed and some cute new rainboots!  I had a pair of polka dot ones in college that I wore a lot and they eventually got a hole in them, which kind of negates the purpose of rain boots.  Can't wait until it rains and I have an excuse to wear these.  I'm actually tempted to just put them on and splash around on the top step of my pool.  Aren't they cute?!
We headed to bed about midnight, which was probably too late considering that we had to get up early for our run.  But oh well, talking to them was worth it. :)  We woke up the next morning at about 7:15am and got ready to head to my old high school for the Ready, Y.E.L.L., Run 5K.  We chose this race for several reasons.  1.  It was a cross country course, which is a little bit easier on the knees, and usually has prettier scenery.  2.  Because I went to high school there, we pretty much knew the terrain, and knew that it was going to be a flat area.  The race sponsor actually sent me a picture of the trail too, and I'm always more comfortable running when I know where I'm going to be headed.  3.  It was a fundraiser to raise money for the "Young Entrepreneurs Leading Luella" and having graduated from Luella and learned a lot through the clubs and organizations that I was involved in, this seemed like a a good fit. 
We met my sister and her family at the school and changed into our race shirts.  We wore these shirts in honor of Dimitri A. del Castillo who was killed in action in Afghanistan on June 25, 2011.  Dmitri was only a year older than me and had been married to a fellow soldier, Katie, for just a few months when he was killed in action.  He gave the ultimate sacrifice for our country.  My sister works with his mother-in-law, Patty, who let us borrow some shirts so that we would be able to honor his memory in even this small way.  My prayers go out to his family, as do my thanks to Dimitri and his wife for fighting for my freedom.  
 After changing, we waited around for a few minutes for the race to start.  We were glad to see that we would be running with about 35-40 other people.  That way the course wouldn't be too crowded.  The race began, and we set off!  It had been misting a little that morning, and after about 2 minutes it became apparent that by the end of the race, our shoes were going to be soaked and covered with mud.  I felt bad for my mom and sister because they had on new tennis shoes.  The path was mostly through grass for the first mile of the course.  Not too many hills, just a couple of holes and uneven areas here and there that could trip you up if you weren't paying attention.  Because of this, I spent most of the race looking down at the ground in front of me.  I think that might have actually helped though, because then I wasn't looking up at how far I had to run!  After about a mile, we entered the nature trail which was definitely the most enjoyable part of the race.  It was a path cut into some woods, and even had a pretty little bridge going over a creek.  We ran on this trail for about .75 miles.  I was still feeling pretty good at this point, so I made a huge display of jumping over a log on the trail.  At the end of this trail was a hill that was practically straight up so you had to get a running start.  But we easily conquered that like Spartans. :)  After this point, we went back on grass and stayed on it for the rest of the race.  At mile 2 there was a student standing there with a sign who was cheering us on with "you're halfway there!"  Now, I definitely appreciated his enthusiasm, but if 2 miles was only halfway to 3.2, I was about to start crying.  
The rest of the race was pretty uneventful, just filled with me trying to keep up with my mom and convincing myself not to stop running.  Oh, and my mom running beside me being really quiet.  For those of you have encountered my mom at my past basketball and volleyball games, or really just any sporting event at all, you know she is a pretty vocal supporter of her children.  I could pick her out in the crowd while I was playing because she was always yelling encouragement and cheering me on.  I definitely appreciated that, and tried to never take her support for granted, because I had several fellow teammates who would have loved for their parents to be there supporting them like mine was.  When we decided to do this race together, I just assumed that she'd want to talk a little during the run or at least just share some encouraging phrases to each other along the way like "you got this!" "run girl run" or "you better not walk".  But nope, just breathing.  We were so focused on controlling our breathing and finishing the race without walking that we were practically silent the whole time.  Well, she was.  I complained a few times.  
So anyways, the last long stretch was down a field, so me and my mom gave it one final push, and sprinted (probably just a "run" to some people, but at that point I felt like I was about to win the gold medal with my sprint).  There were students lined up at the finish line cheering us on, which was really sweet.  I finished in 36:12, and my mom was right behind me at 36:17.  I was a little bummed that I didn't beat my personal record (33:03), but I just had to tell myself that last time I had been training for a lot longer, so I couldn't be too hard on myself.
Soooo close!  
 So during the run we were so focused on putting one foot in front of the other, that I didn't realize we had lost track of Allie.  We all decided at the beginning to just go at our own pace, and me and mom's pace just worked, so we were running together.  Allie was right behind us on the first mile, and I guess I just assumed she was still right behind us when we entered the trail.  Well, no.  At the part where we entered the nature trail, there was a curve right before you got to the trail, and right after you got in the trail, there was another curve.  Well, because of that, Allie didn't see us go into the trail, and thought that she just needed to continue going straight.  Well she did that for a while, and then ended up going into the trail at the opposite end.  The steep hill that we had to climb up to get out of the trail?  Yeah, that's where she went into the trail.  She got about halfway down the nature trail, when she finally saw another runner, except that runner was coming towards her, and said "honey, you're going the wrong way."  Turns out my poor sister had run a half mile the wrong way, and then had to turn around and go back the way she came.  We didn't know this until we went back to find her after we finished.  We tried to cut through a field to head her off, but she was running at a pretty speedy pace and we ended up having to run again to catch up with her.  That's when she told us she had done an extra half mile, at least.  We felt so bad for her!  But she finished strong, at 48:00, which is great considering all the extra running she did.  I was so proud of all of us!  Here's us at the end of the race.  We were all sweaty and tired, and hungry, and our shoes felt like we had just taken a spin on the Log Ride at Six Flags.   
After the race:
For the other two races I have run, we went to Ihop afterwards for brunch, so I suggested we do that after this race too, and make it a tradition.  Here's what I got.  And yes, I ate almost the whole thing.  I think I deserved it!  
I'm so glad we all got to do this together as a family, and I think we all agreed that we will be doing another one again soon.  Some things I enjoyed about this race:  1. The student involvement, from signing people in, to cheering us on at the finish line was really nice to see, 2. The weather was great!  I was a little chilled at the beginning, but felt good throughout the race.  I didn't even sweat that much.  3. The race was not too crowded and the other runners were courteous and funny.  Several people asked us about our shirts, and it was nice being able to share Dimitri's story.  4. There were several Army recruiters at the race, and they donated a bunch of stuff for our goodie bags.  The shirts were awesome too!  I loved that they were maroon, not white like most race shirts.  My mom mentioned that I should get my fellow classmates to agree to run the race with me every year, as a tradition.  I think that's a wonderful idea to keep us in shape, and help support our alma mater.  So what do my fellow Luellans think?  Will ya'll join me next year?!

Monday, April 23, 2012

My husband's cuter than yours

Reason 1 of 1,000,000 why my husband is adorable.  He just called a thermometer a "fever stick."  He's had a headache all day and said he felt warm and asked me to bring him the "fever stick" to check his temperature.  I thought he was so cute that I just had to take a picture of him.
Husband and his fever stick

He doesn't have a fever but claimed that his temperature was "artificially low" because he had taken medicine.  And that's just one of many reasons why I love him. :)
Longer post about the race tomorrow!  Hope everyone enjoyed this beautiful day!!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

We did it! **WARNING picture overload**

Well, we did it!  We all finished the 5K!  Tomorrow I will write more about my weekend and the race, but right now I'm tuckered out and probably about to hit the hay.  But before I go, I am going to leave ya'll with an overload of pictures of my face.  You're welcome, in advance.  When I first started "training" specifically for this 5K, I decided to take a picture of myself after each run.  I just used my cell phone (you can tell when I got the iPhone) and took them immediately after I was done with my run.  I didn't take pictures after days that I just walked, just days that I ran.  You can tell which pictures were taken after long runs, because my face is very red and swollen and I'm nasty sweaty.  Most people would be embarrassed to reveal these pictures, and I actually sort of am...but I have decided recently that I just need to get over myself.  I'm going to try to continue snapping a picture after all of my runs from now on, and hopefully we'll be able to see me shrinking.  So, without further ado, me and my sweaty tomato faces.  Oh, and just ignore my fingers in these pictures...I was trying to think of creative ways to show which run I was on, which was very hard to do with just one free hand.  Despite the confusing number of fingers, these pictures are in order.  

Hope you all had a great weekend!!!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Wish us luck!

So this Saturday is the 5K I am doing with my mom and sister.  Since husband and I are heading towards Atlanta tomorrow right after work, this will probably be my last post before the race.  We've all been training hard, and I'm proud to run/walk it with my mom and sister.  It's fun to do healthy stuff with those you love. :)  I don't feel as prepared for this 5K as I have for the others I have done, but I've definitely tried my best and feel like I've pushed myself.  My prediction is that my mother is going to kick our butts.  I have been so impressed with the updates she has sent me on her training.  She has done so well!   I'm also very proud of my sister.  She has such a busy life, working as a full time teacher and all that that entails, and having a 2 year old to take care of at night, but she has still made it a priority to go out and get exercise as often as she can.  I will definitely be in good company. 
The race is at my old high school, which is a pretty flat area, thankfully!  Here is what the route map looks like:
I like that a majority of it is on unpaved ground, as that feels better on my feet and knees.  So here goes!  Wish us luck!!!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Spoiled much? Part two...

So, you know how I mentioned yesterday that I am pretty spoiled at work?  Well I was sitting there this morning, looking out the window at the rain clouds that were gathering, when a flower truck pulled up.  I thought, huh...are they renting something from us?  (we rent out sound and lighting equipment at my work) But then I saw the man get a beautiful vase of flowers out of the car with a big "Happy Birthday" balloon attached to it.  And I thought, wait!  Are those for me?!  So I looked at the card when the man handed me the vase and it said "Happy Birthday from S&L."  They had gotten me flowers and a balloon for my birthday!  They definitely made my desk prettier and made it smell better as well.  Wanna see them?

Sooo pretty!  I also had another nice birthday surprise in the mail today!  My mother-in-law got me a decal that I had been eying to go on my MacBook Pro.
Isn't it cute?!
I just love it!  Thank you Mrs. Lois and Mr. Tim!  I love birthday times!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Spoiled much?

So where I work, I am the only female.  That's right, I work with all men.  At times it can be frustrating (read gross bathroom) but most times it's quite enjoyable.  There isn't all of that petty female drama, and they're pretty unemotional.  Another perk to being the only female there is that they definitely take care of me.  I mentioned yesterday at our Monday morning meeting that Friday is my birthday because one of the guys is about to have a baby and I said it would be cool if she was born on mine and Hitler's birthday.  So I came into work this morning, and this is what I saw...
Two of the guys totally hooked me up with some delicious birthday treats!  I added up the calories and total it was almost 1600 calories.  I think they're trying to make me fat.  On days like this I am thankful for good co-workers.  Thanks guys :) 

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Happy Birthday Nannie!

Today is my grandmother's birthday so I wanted to give her a little shout out on this here blog of mine.  It's easy, but also a little sad, to remember her birthday because it's on the anniversary of the Titanic sinking.  Her and I have that in common, our birthdays were both on sad days...I was born on Hitler's birthday, which is also when the Columbine shooting happened.  On a more happy note, my grandmother's birthday always marked the first official day that we were allowed to go barefoot as children.  My mom wouldn't let us step outside without shoes on until Nannie's birthday.  I'm glad that our birthdays are so close together, just 5 days apart, because we usually get to celebrate our birthdays together.
My grandmother is such a wonderful, caring, and encouraging grandmother and I truly don't know what I would do without her.  She has always been one of my best friends and is always available for good advice.  She has definitely helped shape me into the person I have become and I will be forever grateful for the love that she has shown to me and the rest of her grandchildren.  So Happy Birthday Nannie!  I hope it's the best one yet!

A picture from last Mother's Day.
In the front is my mom and Nannie, and in the back are me and my sister.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Well happy birth-a-day to me!!!

So next Friday is my birthday, and because I am an incredibly impatient and somewhat controlling person I decided what I wanted Timothy to get me for my birthday and made him get it for me early.  :)  Granted, he did the same thing, just not the getting it early part.  So anyways, I decided for my birthday that I wanted to get myself an iPhone.  I am now the proud (and broke) owner of what I call the Apple trifecta...iPod, iPhone, and MacBook Pro.  I guess all that I'm missing now is the iPad... :)  But I've got my Kindle and that suits me just perfectly for what I'd use an iPad for anyways!  So you wanna see this pretty little thing?

And yes, I did take a picture of one Apple product with another Apple product.  Because that's how I roll...So now everyone in my immediate family has an iPhone except husband.  But he has a fancy Droid so I guess that's alright.  My mom even got her an iPhone today too!  Totally unplanned!  I know this may seem like a luxury but I've never gotten an expensive phone, and I was due for an upgrade, so I didn't pay the full price.  Plus, you guys will benefit too!  Now when I'm too lazy to get either of my nicer cameras and instead post pictures on here that are from my phone, they are going to look better!  Yay!  For example, here's a picture of some spinach artichoke dip from our dinner tonight at Rummy's pizza place in Tally-ho!  (that's Tallahassee for all of you who are not in my brain).

 Doesn't that look clearer than my other phone pictures?  So seeeee, I got this phone for you guys!  haha  And maybe myself :)  Hope everyone is having a good weekend!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Will this be a flower?

It was such a beautiful day outside today!  Every time I've gone outside today I've just wanted to stay.  It made my run this afternoon quite enjoyable.  Not the sweat fest my runs usually are as of late. 
Husband's last tennis match was tonight, so I guess it's back to needing to cook dinner every night. :)  I've enjoyed having a couple of nights off during the week where I can just eat left-overs or cereal and not feel bad for not cooking husband a meal. 
Anyways, in other new, one of my magnolia trees in my front yard has these weird looking spikey things coming out all on the ends of the limbs.  Timothy even noticed them the other day and asked if I knew what they were.  I can't figure out if they're going to be actual blossoms?  Or are they just seed pods?  Or is this how they put out new leaves?  I've never had a magnolia tree and am too lazy to look it up online.  I know I have some smart readers who'll be able to help me out though.  So here's a picture of what they look like. 
Alright you horticulturists, educate me!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Joy's Party

This past Friday I drove up to Atlanta for my friend Joy's bachelorette party.  Apparently I was not the only person who had the idea to go to Atlanta, as the roads were full of Spring breakers traveling home from Florida.  A trip that would normally take me 4 hours ended up taking me over 6 hours because of all of the traffic and road construction.  After that trip I was definitely appreciating my small town with zero traffic.  I ended up getting to the restaurant late, but still had a wonderful time.  I saw several people that I hadn't seen in a long time.  Years even!  Here's a little picture that was taken that night. 
From left: Megan and Suzanne (friends from UGA), me, Anna and Mallory (Joy's sisters), Joy, and Nikki (her friend from church).  Lauren was also there, but left before this picture was taken.  Joy wore that cowgirl hat with the veil on the back the entire night.  She even wore it on the way home until some sketchy looking guys tried to talk to her through her car window at a red light in downtown Atlanta.  Don't worry though, I was behind them in my truck and was packin' heat in case something went down.  Can't have our bride to be getting nabbed in Atlanta.  :)