Starting Over

I need a change. So I've started another blog.

Look on my profile and you'll find me.


Falling apart.

That is all. I'm falling apart. Pieces of me are everywhere. Don't trip over me.


Part 2 of the honeymoon!

So it was my intention to update a few times during the honeymoon so that I could properly keep track of everything we did without having to go back and think. Needless to say, that did not happen. Oops! Well, at least I can give a broad overview of what an awesome time we had.

We spent 6 days in Napa and Sonoma (stayed in Santa Rosa). The second day we went to the Petrified Forest where Supercat followed us for the entire walking tour. Also visited the Calistoga Old Faithful and a few really tasty wineries -- Charles Krug, Ehlers Estate (bought a bottle, proceeds go to the cardiovascular institute), Beringer and Flora Springs. The first two were the best, and the others were interesting but I didn't like the wines at all. We had dinner at the Culinary Institute of America's Wine Spectator Graystone Restaurant, which while not being the best meal I've ever eaten, it was a great experience and pretty good food. They sat us in front of the fireplace and we had a bottle of wine -- I had the loin of lamb, and Christen had the flank steak. Both tasty. The best part was the dessert -- some sort of frozen custard with strawberries ... yum! Day three we took Hwy 12 down toward Carneros and hit Chateau St. Jean (fantastic, bought a bottle of reserve Malbec) Ravenswood (also tasty, but did tasting with pretentious wine guy from Chicago who drove us up the wall), Benziger, Sebastiani (the Cherryblock was amazing) and Kenwood (not so much). The best place of the day was Moon Mountain, where we ended up on a private tour of the winery which included the working wine caves (as opposed to historical wine caves like at Beringer) and a barrel tasting of different Cab Franc years (I personally liked the younger one, but I'm not a Cab Franc drinker -- it's too dry for me). It was awesome, and we got a bottle there but I don't remember which one.
We had some time to kill after the last winery, so we decided to drive out to Yountville so I could take pictures of French Laundry for Brad and Jordan (eat there? I don't have that kind of money). We ate at Bouchan which was a block away and was also fabulous.
Day four was rainy and nasty, so we drove down to Fairfield and toured the Jelly Belly factory -- smelled so sugary! After that we went to the Charles Schultz museum (very neat) and ate dinner at a fabulous Indian restaurant in downtown Santa Rosa -- it was likely the best meal of the trip. I had the Lamb Saag and Christen had some Indian venison concoction, and we had a bottle of wine to wash it down. Uh! I wish I was still there!
Day five was still a bit rainy, so we drove north to the Ave of the Giants to see the Giant Redwoods. It was neat, but I can only see so many trees, so I fell asleep while Christen drove out to the coast. How gorgeous! We drove down the coast and stopped on one of the beaches, and I took crazy amounts of pictures!
Day six we left for Yosemite, but first we stopped at Dariouch for a tasting, as I had heard about them from 3WineGuys and I was interested. They were way over the top! Very Persian .... the wine was good, but I think we had better on the Route 12 day, so we headed out to Yosemite.

Our first night in Yosemite we drove through the south part and made it up to the snow -- this is only the second time I've seen snow, and the first time I was able to enjoy it. The only other time was a band trip to Indy in '98 -- how sad is that! We spent 3 nights in Oakhurst, which is right below the south entrance to Yosemite. It was spectacular! We hiked to 3 falls, saw all the Ansel Adams sights, made a snowman (he was 6 inches tall, but still), had snowball fights, saw the Giant Sequoias, and ate fantastically. Sushi two nights, and Ducey's resort restaurant the middle night. We had a cottage at Houndstooth Inn, and it was beautiful -- and huge! Fireplace, Jacuzzi tub, 2-head shower .... I can't say enough about the place. Wine country was wonderful, but that bed and breakfast was amazing.

After Yosemite we headed to Vegas. It was a long drive, but we hit Hoover Dam first, because you have to see Hoover Dam at least once. I've seen it, so I'm good for the next 20 years. :) We stayed at the Stratosphere on the end of the Strip, and they upgraded our room from a regular one to a honeymoon suite for very little more! It was a very nice room, but we hit the rest of the strip for most of the time. I loved all the casinos -- so crazy! We saw Beatles Love by Cirque Du Soliel, which was phenomenal and indescribable ... if you go, spring for the good seats, it definitely made a difference! The second night we saw Spamalot, which was hilarious. In between we saw as much as we could -- Mandalay Bay, Luxor, Excaliber, Paris, the Venetian, NY NY, Belagio, Treasure Island, Wynn, the Mirage, Ceasar's ... I think that's everywhere we went. We actually missed very few on the strip. I didn't get to see anything off the strip, and I have several friends in Vegas that I didn't get to see because I had very limited internet access between Sonoma and the airport, but I guess there's always next time! I had a blast!
Anyhow, I'm sure there's more, and I'll definitely post pictures but for now, ta ta!


Quick wedding update and part 1 of the honeymoon!


So I'm finally an old married woman. It's weird; I don't feel married. I feel good, but being married makes me feel so old!
The wedding was beautiful. I have a few pictures that were emailed to me that I'm going to put up on my MySpace for now, but I'll put up the real thing when I finally get home … I really wasn't nervous until my flowers didn't show up until 1:30 and I freaked out, but then they finally got there and I was able to get dressed and walk down that aisle! I started shaking when I took Dad's arm, and I kept tripping over my slip but we managed to get through it and it was fantastic! The reception was great -- so much fun, and I got to see everybody and dance … I don't feel it was long enough -- I could have done that all night, if it wasn't for my 4-inch heels! I was in pain by the end of the night, but thankfully Shea and Kyle followed us to the hotel and brought our luggage (although after the hasty exit from the church I was missing several key items, like my bra and razor!)
We left for the airport at 3:30am, but our flight was delayed until after 6am. That put us an hour behind, and we missed our connecting flight in ..:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Charlotte by more than 20 minutes. Thankfully, a manager squeezed us on the 9:20am flight to San Francisco on stand-by, but it was a good thing that nothing happened because they never took our names so we weren't on the manifesto. Alas, our luggage did not follow us.
San Francisco was neat but very cold. It was a high of the early 60s, and all our warm clothing was in my bag, which continued to be lost. Christen's came in the middle of the night Monday, but mine didn't show. We walked through Chinatown and Union Square, and ate dinner at the Stinking Rose -- I totally wanted to order the "Silence of the Lamb Shank with fava beans", especially since we were drinking a bottle of the house Chianti, but I just couldn't fit it in so I stuck with these amazing roasted mussels and a salad. Christen got the garlic meatloaf with garlic mashed potatoes and Swiss chard (I could have eaten all that Swiss chard on top of my meal -- fantastic!)
We stuck around in San Francisco for another day Tuesday waiting for my bag to show up. We hit Haight Ashbury, Coit Tower, Golden Gate Park (ahh, the tulips were gorgeous). Finally after coaxing and a bit of hysteria, my bag was found at the airport and we dropped by to get it before jetting up to Santa Rosa just before dark to check in. Dinner was at Outback because our desk clerk was less than helpful about finding a good place to eat and we didn't know the area, but it was still pretty tasty.
Day one in Santa Rosa was awesome. Just awesome. We started out at the Kendell-Jackson vineyard, but they didn't open until 10, so we found a diner for breakfast and drove around through the mountains and vineyards until open. KJ was great, and the wines were delish -- we had the reserve list, which are very limited and only available through the vineyard. Our wine pourer was very nice and pointed us to a few other vineyards.
Next stop was the Delouch vineyard. The wines there were wonderful (we bought a bottle) and the pourer was also very interesting. We then hit a sushi place called Sake-o in Healdsburg and it was wonderful -- I had a Mt. Fuji roll (smoked salmon, cucumbers and scallops) and a spider roll, and Christen had chicken teriyaki. After sustenance we hit Simi winery where we had a very interesting tour (though neither of us cared much for the wines) and wound our way through the countryside stopping at Robert Strong winery for a taste before hitting Kohl's for some new bras and socks (thank god!) and grabbing a burger at In & Out.
Anywho, off to bed (Christen's been asleep for about 2 hours). Up tomorrow: Old Faithful, more wine and maybe dinner at the Culinary Institute of America's Wine Spectator Graystone Restaurant. More to come!


Pictures soon!! We're sitting in the terminal waiting for our delayed flight. Life is good!!


Gettin' hitched on Sunday!

The last few days have been a little crazy, so I'm just going to say: I probably won't be around at all for the next two weeks. After all, I'm getting married!

Yesterday was the last of the running around like a chicken with my head cut off (excuse the tired cliche, I have no time to think up good ones). There was the tuxes and getting the groomscake and manicures and showing up late to my own rehearsal ... but everything turned out alright, and we had the rehearsal and the rehearsal dinner last night, which means today should be a little less stressful. I simply have to finish picking up the house, finish packing, get my pedicure (the girls will be here at 8:30) a print and assemble 80 programs for the wedding. No sweat, right?

So I'll leave you with our engagement photo, and I'll be back mid-honeymoon for a quickie (update, I mean!) Toodles until then!!


A sad day for the literary world

Novelist Kurt Vonnegut dies at 84


Shades of melancholy

So now for a real post. Sort of.

I miss my writing. Dear friend Autumn got fantastic news that she will be the new EIC of Inkwell Journal. I've been perusing the photography and poetry of friend Brian and was awestruck by the beauty. I spent the day at work listening to Craig's stylings. And of all this, it hits me that it has been quite awhile since I've written anything of substance. I think often of writing; first lines meander through my mind while I'm cleaning or cooking or driving. I don't have the determination to continue through to the end. Perhaps after the wedding I will pick it back up. I do miss it so.

Woohoo! I'm out of work!


What's with today, today (my favorite movie from which to quote)

Today I've been working as if today was my last day.
That is to say, I'm either working like crazy or not at all. Your choice.

No, really I'm working like crazy because I'm trying to make sure that everything is done, so tomorrow, my real last day, I'm not hyperventilating from the amount of work I haven't done. I'm actually in very good shape, so there shouldn't be an issue. And now that I've said that, all shit shall hit the fan, yes?

But I'm taking a minute to blog, because I really don't know how much time I'll have over the next week to do so.

Friday night I decided to take the night off from worrying about wedding stuff, since things had been so intense throughout the week that I couldn't see straight. I spent an hour at Wilson's purusing books (I bought two: Vanity Fair, because I always like to pick up a book that I feel I should have read but haven't, which is not to say I will, and The Last Madam, about the underground brothels of New Orleans ... looks like a good read). I spent an hour at Theresa's, admiring her belly and talking wedding and baby nonsense while the puppies took turns fighting over my lap and giving me kisses that I semi-successfully fended off. I spent an hour on L's couch while she got ready to go out, admired the ivory fishnets w/ braided seams she was sporting (I could never get away with such things) and then we were off to downtown St. Pete for my last romp as a single woman. We met up with a lovely set of people, dined on Indian cuisine (I had never had before, but it was glorious), and drank at Indy, the Globe (Geri X was fantastic), Indy, Indy and Indy. Did I mention we hung out at Indy? After L and sis took off, Craig and I had a final drink and people-watching moment at The Lobby before he dropped me at my car and I meandered home in the wee hours of the morning.

Saturday we ran final wedding errands which included purchasing $65 of fake grapes and a can of spray adhesive ... not something you buy every day, right? My sister spent the night and we had the requisite few hours of drama before settling in, and subsequently missing sunrise service with the fam. Jamie and I caught up with them after breakfast, went grave hopping and back to Christen's nana's house for lunch and hours and hours of poker. I love poker days. We made a bit of money, though I don't know how much -- about $15-$20 maybe? And when bets are 10 cents to a quarter, that's a good day!


Not soon enough

10 more days to go until I am a happily married woman. I can't wait -- I'm so sick of prep work! This week has been hard, at work and afterward, because I've been working off a list to get everything done for the wedding so I don't have to worry. Work is crazy stressful because everything that comes in has to be worked pronto because Tuesday is my last day of work. Tonight I went over my mom's to get my hair dyed and she wasn't home so I crawled up in my brother's bed and took a nap while he played video games. I should be going to bed early, but I know it's not going to happen. Next week should be better because I'm spending all my time this week getting things together so I shouldn't have too much to do then.

Maybe I'll blog later when I'm not so beat.


How much drink could a woodchuck drink?

What a weekend! This weekend was my bachelorette party, and I had a fabulous time! Stacy, Shea and I met up at the Hyatt downtown where we had a beautiful room, and they adorned it with all sorts of crazy decorations. Then we met up with a bunch of people down at Spain, a tapas restaurant about a block from the hotel. It was amazing! There was flamenco dancing and tons of tapas to be had by all -- their goat cheese was the best I've ever tasted! Afterward we went back to the hotel for drinks and so they could adorn me with silly bachelorette-wear -- a tiara, veil, spinner button, a couple shot glasses and a sash (I disappointed them by cutting down to one shot glass and no sash, but it covered my cleavage! I couldn't have that!) and we headed down to Channelside. Mucho drinks, mucho fun! I drank far too much, but not so much that I was puking, so we were good! I'm certain that there are interesting pictures out there, but I've only seen one of them, which I'll have to post later. Shea, Shelley and I retired to the hotel room to read raunchy romance novels until we fell asleep, and then Sunday morning Shea and I laid out by the pool for a bit before heading home.

The boys had a crazy time too, I'm told, but likely not as fun -- they were nearly still passed out from partying when we got home around noon on Sunday, and Christen slept on and off all day while I helped my sister on a class project and fiddled around with wedding prep. Toodles!


See it to believe it

I have a favorite stripclub -- Personalities, it's called, like people really care about their personalities. It's not my favorite because I've ever been there. Alas, I've only been to one strip club in my life -- more than a year ago I drunkenly stumbled into Mons Venus with some friends.

No, Personalities is my favorite for a different reason: the signs. These people put up the funny signs. Like the bicycle graveyard on Fletcher. Weird, funny signs. Once a week they change the sign. I know I've talked about this before.

But today there's another sign: Mediocre people are at there best. "there" best?

Is it a typo? A clever joke? More likely, sadly, just stupidity.


I love San Francisco and I'm not even there yet!

I made reservations at The Stinking Rose for our first night and I MADE THEM ONLINE.

God, I'm looking forward to this trip.

"Do you know how big the crack is?"

... innocent question overheard many times at my job.

I'm excited for a variety of reasons. a) The Gators are in the Final 4. Say what you like about basketball and the Gators, but they've been my team for always except six months in 9th grade when I was dating FSU fan Mark Nelson. But then we broke up and I went back to my first love -- UF. And the Gators are the only team that will drag me into watching my most loathed "game" -- basketball. I detest basketball. But I'll watch it for my boys.

Reason for excitement b) I only have 11 more days of work before I get my vacation for my wedding. Hurrah! I need to set up appointments for mani/pedi (Shell, same place as usual? I need to see Leeney) and mostly I need to relax. God, I need this vacation. Everyone should get married just to get 2 1/2 weeks off work. What? Is that not reason enough?

Reason for excitement c) My bachelorette party is starting to come together -- yay for free (hopefully) drinks! We've got a hotel room for all the girls at the Hyatt Regency, and we're going to go to Spain for tapas (I know, seems like a ways to drive, right? But no, it's only a block from the hotel) and take the trolley to Channelside so that we may get sloshed without having to worry about having a DD. God love the trolley system. We have the worst public transportation system in the entire US, but trolleys to drinking areas? We've got 'em! I'm hoping not to be embarrassed to thoroughly, but with this group who knows. As long as I'm drinking, god help us! Who's bringing the camera? :) If you're in the area, come join us at Channelside! Buy me a drink!

Reason for excitement d) I finally got new earbuds for my iPod that are so extremely comfortable that I could be listening to my iPod for the next year. Awesome. In case anybody is wondering, they're these:

which they make in metal too, but it wasn't worth it for another $20. I lost my last pair, and I tried to get a cheap pair but they hurt my ears so I went back to these -- the best $30 EVAR.

Reason for excitement e) I finally found something on iTunes worth using my iTunes gift card that Shell gave me almost a year ago -- I bought Hello Radio: Various Artists play TMBG. Just so you know, don't go out and get it. But I'm glad I used my gift card on it, because I really wanted to hear it, and now I'm not so upset that it sucks. Because it's not real money anyhow, and all that.



I watched college basketball this weekend.


And I liked it. Where's the real April?

Been awhile :)

I am nerdier than 74% of all people. Are you nerdier? Click here to find out!


a meme courtesy of NPR Junkie

Look at the list of books below:

-- Bold the ones you’ve read
-- Italicize the ones you want to read
-- leave blank the ones that you aren’t interested in.

1. The Da Vinci Code (Dan Brown)
2. Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
3. To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee)
4. Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell)
5. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (Tolkien)
6. The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (Tolkien)
7. The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers (Tolkien)
8. Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery)
9. Outlander (Diana Gabaldon)
10.A Fine Balance (Rohinton Mistry)
11. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Rowling)
12.Angels and Demons (Dan Brown)
13.Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Rowling)
14. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving)
15. Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden)
16.Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Rowling)
17. Fall on Your Knees(Ann-Marie MacDonald)
18. The Stand (Stephen King)
19. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Rowling)
20. Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte)
21. The Hobbit (Tolkien)
22. The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger)
23. Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)
24. The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)
25. Life of Pi (Yann Martel)
26. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams)
27. Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
28. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (C. S. Lewis)
29. East of Eden (John Steinbeck)
30. Tuesdays with Morrie (Mitch Albom)
31. Dune (Frank Herbert)
32. The Notebook (Nicholas Sparks)
33. Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand)
34. 1984 (Orwell)
35. The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley)
36. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
37. The Power of One (Bryce Courtenay)
38. I Know This Much is True (Wally Lamb)
39. The Red Tent (Anita Diamant)
40. The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho)
41. The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel)
42. The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)
43. Confessions of a Shopaholic (Sophie Kinsella)
44. The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)
45. Bible
46. Anna Karenina (Tolstoy)
47. The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)
48. Angela’s Ashes (Frank McCourt)
49. The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck)
50. She’s Come Undone (Wally Lamb)
51. The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver)
52. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)
53. Ender’s Game (Orson Scott Card)
54. Great Expectations (Dickens)
55. The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)
56. The Stone Angel (Margaret Laurence)
57. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling)
58. The Thorn Birds (Colleen McCullough)
59. The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood)
60. The Time Traveller’s Wife (Audrew Niffenegger)
61. Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
62. The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand)
63. War and Peace (Tolstoy)
64. Interview With The Vampire (Anne Rice)
65. Fifth Business (Robertson Davis)
66. One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
67. The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants (Ann Brashares)
68. Catch-22 (Joseph Heller)
69. Les Miserables (Hugo)
70. The Little Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery)
71. Bridget Jones’ Diary (Fielding)
72. Love in the Time of Cholera (Marquez)
73. Shogun (James Clavell)
74. The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje)
75. The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)
76. The Summer Tree (Guy Gavriel Kay)
77. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Betty Smith)
78. The World According To Garp (John Irving)
79. The Diviners (Margaret Laurence)
80. Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White)
81. Not Wanted On The Voyage (Timothy Findley)
82. Of Mice And Men (Steinbeck)
83. Rebecca (Daphne DuMaurier)
84. Wizard’s First Rule (Terry Goodkind)
85. Emma (Jane Austen)
86. Down (Richard Adams)
87. Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)
88. The Stone Diaries (Carol Shields)
89. Blindness (Jose Saramago)
90. Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer)
91. In The Skin Of A Lion (Ondaatje)
92. Lord of the Flies (Golding)
93. The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck)
94. The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd)
95. The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum)
96. The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton)
97. White Oleander (Janet Fitch)
98. A Woman of Substance (Barbara Taylor Bradford)
99. The Celestine Prophecy (James Redfield)
100.Ulysses (James Joyce)

Coincidentally, I have several of these books but haven't read them yet ... and I did read the 3rd book of Harry Potter before realizing I had no interest, but I'm not even sure which one that is :) and I've never seen the movies ...

Anyone else feel like playing?


demented mouthpiece

So a couple weeks ago I bought a mouth guard. It cost $18.99 and entailed boiling in water, shaping to my teeth and submerging in ice water. A real ordeal, I'm telling you. The reason I bought such a thing is because I grind my teeth while I sleep. It keeps Christen awake, and I'm pretty sure it is the source of my migraines. TMJ disorders beware!

The first night I woke up early and it was still in my mouth. The second night I woke up and found it underneath me. Since then I've found it back on my nightstand, between pillows, under me, under Christen, and tangled in the sheets at the end of the bed. The good news? I haven't been grinding my teeth. The bad? I'm having anxiety over losing this damn mouth guard in the middle of the night, it falling on the ground and Lola having a new chew toy. I wish I could silly putty it to my teeth so it would stay in my mouth. It's really tight -- I have to actually be pushing it out in the middle of the night. Or it's getting up and running away, which I wouldn't put past it.


Very short on the very long

Here's the skinny on the friend, per True's request.

We've talked, and it's better. Not perfect, but better. She just needed time away from everything, and decided to ignore her phone for a week. But since I'm conditioned to believe that when people don't call me back (especially her) that they're mad at me, I obviously thought that she was mad at me. And since I thought that she was mad, I didn't go over to see her, so it just got worse. But finally Wednesday we got in touch and had a long talk, and then went for some lovely sushi. Friday night I called her on the drive down to St. Pete, and shot the dung for a bit.

Hopefully it'll all last. I hate losing friends.
"You've got to hydrate it a little. Just hold it in your mouth and let it moisten up a little"

-- Christen to me after I cooked my turkey bacon to pork rind status

My mom bought chocolate double stuff Oreos and sent me home with some to dip into my fat free organic milk. Yum :)

I'm incredibly exhausted tonight. The library officially broke me. We spent all evening moving large-print books so that the movies can be at the front. I got two new bookcases on Sunday and I can't bear the thought of having to move my books. Those bookcases are going to sit in the foyer for a bit while I think about it. In the meantime, they talked me into coming in again tomorrow to move more books. Hehe ...

Sunday we went to see Zodiac. I actually liked it, although most people I know didn't. No special effects. Crap, right?


The divine and the bored.

Recovering from a weekend that was half delicious and half lazy and boring is a bit of a challenge. Do you rest from the crazy fun night you had Friday night? Or do you get out and do something to combat the lay-in-bed-and-watch tv night you had Saturday? I haven't decided which needs to be done, but I suspect some laundry washing is in store.

Friday night I went out with L and had a marvelous time. We went to dinner at Ceviche -- I had the mussels and the baked goat cheese, and I snacked on everyone else's tapas as well -- there were mushrooms, salmon, artichokes (which I've never liked before, but they were wonderful), and an amazing duck in chocolate sauce. The sangria was a little weak but tasty, and since we were moving on to more alcohol that was definitely fine.

Afterward we hit the Independent, which was very enjoyable, but probably would have been more fun if there were slightly less people. It happened to be First Friday, which always brings out the less regulars, and since the bar is between Central and 1st, people tend to migrate. I drank Ococim and whatever Bill poured in my glass between beers ... the people watching was great. Bill and I drooled over barely legal frat boys, watched two girls make a show of making out on the sidewalk, there was a boy-fight, I fell once, L fell at least once, and I met lots of yummy people whose names elude me.

Saturday was more of a recovery day, I suppose. I slept in, which never happens (about 9:30), and we did very little all day. We registered for china at Macy's and wandered around Westshore mall for a bit, had Evo's for lunch (mmm, garden grill) and then came home. I climbed into bed around 6pm because I was exhausted, but didn't sleep and instead watched more than my share of DIY shows and Law & Order (most definitely not a DIY show -- that would just be weird).


Things are better now. I'll blog more later.


Tuesday, and it's already a bad week.

My best friend has been not talking to me for over a week. It possibly has been longer than that, because I haven't seen her in more than a month. She keeps having excuses as to why we can't hang out. Then last week all went to hell. I've called and texted her approximately 30 times (not an exaggeration) with no response. I'm 6 weeks out from my wedding and she's refusing to talk to me. I've never been so lonely as I have been this last week. I don't know what to do at this point. I cry all the time, at my cube, in the bathroom, at home, in the car, at my mom's house ... It never ends.

Then yesterday Christen's best friend lost his job.


Selfish you

You never are a person I can lean on. You're so preoccupied with your own problems. Is it selfish of me to wish that you'd care about me? That you'd answer my phone calls, or call me back? I'm not asking you to do anything. I'm just asking for you to listen. I'm sick of listening.


Yay for prez day!

I'm so happy to have a 3-day weekend. You don't even understand. The regular weekend went by pretty quickly. Saturday we ran errands and tried to help my mom replace her sliding glass door. No good. We also went to get our sample cake, which turned out okay after only a mild breakdown by yours truly. Sunday we spent most of the day at home, cleaning and addressing invitations.

Today I have a very busy day planned. Taxes, hair dye, dinner with the almost-hubby, and more invitation addressing. Sounds delightful!


Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Christen's working tonight so I'm having dinner with my mom and siblings. I hope you have someone to share the day with that you love, no matter in what capacity!



Don't you hate when you pinkie swear you won't tell on news that you found out and then once you found out you really want to tell people? Especially when you planned on telling people before, but you didn't plan on getting pinkie-sweared into not telling.

Dear you,

I miss your friendship. I know I shouldn't, it's been a long time. But somehow I keep getting sucked in to wondering what it would be like to still be friends. We were, once. After love was dead and before spite got in the way. I wonder now if we'd even like each other if we hung out again -- we've both changed so much. I've realized that I like being girlie and professional and I've dropped the little kid act. You ... well, I don't know you anymore. You spend your time with people I don't know (and likewise) and have interests that I don't know. I've found my own interests and realized that I don't enjoy most of what you did.

Still, I find myself dreaming about you. You babysitting my kids, us hanging out and being silly, you finding the one of your dreams. I want that for you the way I found it for me. And maybe then it would be easier to call you and say, "What are you doing tuesday? I need a friend."

The fates are alligned in a plot to keep me from getting to work on time.

That's all I'm saying.


37 cents.

We had such a terrible dinner last night. We were all out in Orlando- Shea, Kyle, Christen and I, and wanted to go to our very favorite restaurant out there -- Jungle Jim's. They have fantastic burgers, and not ones that we can get out here, so we always make the effort to go there. So we get there around 6:30 and THEY'RE CLOSED. No note on the door, no "We've moved our location", just gone. So we drove out to the Church St. Station location, which I haven't been to in 6-7 years, and we couldn't find them either. So back to Crossroads, and we ended up eating at Buffalo Wild Wings, and the food was terrible, the service was horrible, and the manager didn't give a rat's ass. All around bad, bad experience. Although none of ever leave bad tips, we snuck out with only leaving a 37-cent tip because we were all just so mad. I've never done that -- usually I will just round my dollars down instead of up if I'm unsatisfied. This time -- well, I'm never going back there anyhow. Not to the one here either, actually. Other April said she's never had a bad experience there but I'm not chancing it. If you work for BWW, please don't try to bribe me with coupons -- I don't even want them.

Other than that, though, it was a pretty decent weekend. As I mentioned, I was drunk on Friday night. Actually, I went to happy hour at Bar Louie, and although I really wasn't that tipsy while leaving, I opted to get a ride home anyhow, and by the end of the ride I felt trashed so it was a good thing I got a ride. It was way fun, and I was so glad I went.

Other highlights:

-- Went to dinner Saturday night with Christen's parents and my dad. Leaving, I was talking to my dad and he goes, "I've never noticed how green your eyes are", and I said, well, I'm wearing contacts ... and he was aghast that he didn't even notice! :) It was very funny. I'm not wearing colored contacts, but my eyes are a dark hazel so they range from more brown to more green.

-- Went to the outlet mall in Orlando w/ the crew on Sunday. Fun, and I got two shirts for very cheap. Downtown Disney yielded a bath bomb (incentive for me to clean the bathtub) and almond soap. We also stopped in to Ragland Road for a beer and appetizer which was very cute, but next time we'll opt for the outside "Hole in the Wall" bar. It seems to have a bit more character. There is a Guiness Hat picture floating hereabouts of Shea and I. We also played minigolf, and I came in last. Great fun!

Work now, but it hasn't been too bad. I'm looking forward to the three-day weekend! 1/2 day down, 4 1/2 left!



Been drinking.


I sleep now.




So last week was bad. Like, bad, bad. Bad. By Friday night my face hurt from frowning and I was falling asleep on Nana's couch during cake and ice cream for her 82nd birthday. Everything came to a head: work sucked, wedding things weren't getting done, Christen was going to start working nights, stress was falling out my ears.

So this week I've decided to make an about face and stop worrying. As for work, I can only do what I can do. Other than that, I'm done worrying about it. As for the wedding, since Christen is working nights anyhow, I can start working on everything on my own and not have to worry about what's not getting done. If I do it myself, I don't have to think about it so much. Tonight I'm going to stop at JoAnn's and get things for favors and see what I can figure out on that front. I haven't really decided what I want to do, which makes things difficult. I've been skimming through Frommers.com and tripadvisor.com to find hotels in our price range that are nice so I can make reservations pronto. Does anyone know of hotels in San Francisco, the vineyards, Yosemite and Vegas that are nice and stay around $100/night? I don't need a lot of amenities, just clean and cute work for me. And for the longest stretch, in the vineyards, clean is my biggest thing. We plan on staying in San Fran for 1 night, Sonoma or Napa for 7 nights, Yosemite for 2 nights and Vegas for 2 nights.

The weekend was good but busy. Saturday I worked at the library in the morning to make up for my Mondays that I've been taking off, and then I had a cake tasting. I really liked the chef and the cake but he was so busy. We ordered a sample cake to see if what we want will work out, and we'll have to decide on that later. I'm not too concerned, because at least we've started on it. The afternoon was dedicated to taking my mom up to Spring Hill to get a bike. That worked out well, but it seems there is an issue with the battery that now needs to be resolved. Because nothing's ever easy, right? That night we went over to Charlie & Katie's new place (a wonderful 3 block walk) and brought Lola to mingle with their dog Holly. That was a trip -- Holly kept running from Lola with her tail between her legs.

Sunday I made guacamole and we ordered wings for the superbowl. S&K and S&R came over, and we had a great time. I'd venture to say that it was one of the best time that I've had with the six of us. We had a fire in the pit behind the house and Shell and Rich stayed until very late having s'mores and listening vaguely to the end of the game. And it was a great game! I have to say, I didn't really care who won, but I love turnovers. They're so exciting! And I was technically rooting for the Colts (Kyle was the only pro-Bears rooter of the day) so things went well.


We spoke in whispers of poetry
Stolen lines of script
Glimpses of melody
Traces of memories.

Notes from the past are now buried
Between old pages
Lost like old friends
Pulled out for a sweet smile

Happiness forgotten in the shadows
Of a bitter voice
Once there was joy and hope, but
You gave up and I moved on.

These are the keys to doors that no longer open
Drafts of feelings no longer felt
Hope for lives no longer joined
Poems of moments since forgotten

Once we spoke in poetry
But I’ve stopped believing in it
Stuck to writing the stories of my life
And I’m coming up for Air.



Sometimes I feel like even if I found someone to talk to, there's no one willing to listen.


Like a whole new ring

Yesterday was a bad day. That's all there is to it. I called out at the library in favor of lounging on the couch and being waited on by Christen and catching up on shows from last week. There were, however, highlights:

I paid for our invitations, and those should come in 7-10 days from now (hurrah!). This is what they look like.

And I stopped at Jared's to see if I could get my mom's ring fixed, as it was missing a baguette. My mom gave me this ring a couple years ago, and it was the first ring she ever bought herself. It's not generally in my style (it's gold where I prefer silver, it's a baguette setting and I stay away from those), but I love it dearly. Since I got the ring, it's been missing a stone and I've been too lazy to get it fixed. It was also filthy from 20-odd years of never being cleaned. So I took it in the get it fixed, and the lady seriously cleaned it. Like 5 minutes in the steamer cleaned it. And guess what! There weren't any missing stones -- the ring was just so dirty that you couldn't see the one stone anymore. So she cleaned it and polished it and now it's like I have a whole new ring. Mom says it probably looks like when she bought it :) That makes me super happy.

The last gift for my bridesmaids came in. I can't say what it is, because they read this too, but they look so cool! I ordered one for myself too, and it has my soon-to-be name on it, so I brought it to work and put it on my desk so I don't feel the urge to show it off to my girls ... now, I just need to get them spelled right and we'll be good. They spelled mine and Autumn's correctly, but misspelled Shea's and Shelley's names so I have to send them back and get them redone. Thankfully, there's plenty of time for that. Yay for getting stuff for people!

I also started looking for something to get the parents. I found these sappy sweet framed poems that you put a wedding picture in that is a definite possibility. Parents like that sort of thing :) I need to make a list of everything I need to finish so that I can get it done -- my goal had been to finish getting everything done this week, but that's obviously not going to be the case so maybe by next week? Hmmm ... if I don't go nuts by then, we'll see. :)



Rains down in Africa

It's a shame that GTA Vice City has completely killed my love for Toto. It's still on my iPod, and everytime I hit that song in the shuffle, I can't hit the forward button fast enough. I walk into the library and Christen is listening to it on the computer (yes, he puts it on repeat). I walk into the living room and he's driving the car in GTA listening to that same station .... I just want to reach out and wring Toto's collective neck!

In other news, I am adjusting to life without glasses, slowly. It takes me less time to put them in, and Saturday I forced Christen to take me to the flea market to get a very hot pair of designer knock-offs. Everybody has good things to say about my lack-of-glasses, which worries me about how I looked with glasses, because I do still prefer them. I need to get new lenses because my prescription has gone up, so I'm stuck in contacts for at least the next two weeks, but I would ultimately like to go back to glasses full time and contacts only part time.

We finally picked out our invitations this weekend. They are very nice and way sophisticated -- and a tad expensive, but not as expensive as if we had gone to Crane or such. We stuck with Party City, because among the cheesy castle and roses invites they had a number of classy cards ... and they were 30% off, which made them much more affordable. Once they come in I'll probably post a picture so you can see what great taste we have. Ha!

Also drove down to Ellenton to putz around the outlet mall for a few hours. I got a couple pairs of jeans (the whole reason for going down there -- for some reason I fit the weird sizes better than standard), a pair of jean capris and two blouses. Christen came away with two tee-shirts, two pairs of jeans and a wool peacoat. He's wanted one of those damn coats for months, and I don't like them on men. But he could not be persuaded to stick with his leather jacket, so I am now the proud owner of a man with a wool peacoat. Hmmm.

Dinner was at Red Lobster last night as we had a gift certificate from Christmas still, and it was very tasty. Somehow we were there for almost 2 hours, but still it was tasty. I had shrimp scampi and coconut shrimp. Ahh, shrimp. Tasty little buggers, they are. And leftovers for tonight -- hurrah!


One drink or two?

I got contacts yesterday. Which is not to say I won't generally still be wearing my glasses, because I will. I love my glasses. I think I look good in my glasses. Boys like my glasses ...

But I wanted contacts for the wedding, and I figured if I got them now I could wear them a little bit and get used to them beforehand. They were a kick at work -- everyone loved them. :) Tonight, happy hour.


Knot my fault

My back is killing me (literally, slowly). Last night I worked at the library organizing the stacks of newspaper (they keep 2 months of back issues of 4 major newspapers) and for three hours I was stooped over a table fixing them and now I have a knot right in the middle of my back (right where I can't get to it myself). It's quite frustrating, really. I've been hunched today to keep it from throbbing, but when I get up I have to put my shoes on and the heels aren't helping. Thank god for my purple socks:

(note: not my socks).

I made a fresh pesto sauce last night and mixed it with penne pasta and shrimp -- it was tasty. I brought the leftover pasta for lunch today. There weren't many shrimp left (they were the extras from Sunday's dinner) so we gobbled them up last night. I could seriously eat shrimp everyday and be blissfully happy.



This is the best bottle of wine I have ever had in my life. Slightly sweet with berry and heat, dry finish, with hints of mocha and coffee -- seriously, I gushed over this bottle the whole night. Served with bacon-wrapped shrimp, asparagus and green beans, and white rice. Because I drink red wine with anything I possibly can. So amazing. Go buy a bottle. Now.


Ahhh, shopping

Took the man-child and the evil sister shopping today, him to the used bookstore and her to get a dress for her 8th grade dance. That's all I've got. Tonight's for relaxing.

(note: not my dog. Cute though, even if it is a spaniel.)


I wish I could make the same sound the dog makes ...

... when she lays down to sleep. It's sort of a sigh through the nose. She keeps alternating between passed out and chewing on her leg. That I don't care to do. Christen is asleep in the chair, though I don't think he knows he's asleep yet.

I was in a terrible mood today. I had a dream that the wedding was a mess, and then I got a text from my MOH that she wasn't able to come to the dress fitting this weekend, and I just got into this funk that was hard to break. Luckily, there was plenty of wine here and Charlie and Katie met us for wings at Winghouse, so I was nice and loose and fun by the time they got here. My legs are still a little tingly, but I might just sleep that off.


Wrap me in designer sheets ...

I boned up on my sleep, and not in the dirty way. I've been going to sleep between 9:30 and 10:30 every night, and it has rocked! Except that yesterday I had a reeling headache and moped about the house eating frozen pizza and mac & cheese (Annie's organics, so at least I was trying to be a good girl) and doing laundry and cleaning. When my head wasn't throbbing, at least. Thankfully, the house is cleaned and my head has finally stopped doing the polka behind my eyes. La de dah ....


On the menu.

What I should have done this weekend was relax. Of course, I don't often relax, and as such I've come back to work just as tired as I left. At least I had a good time, right?

On the way home Friday I decided that Christen and I needed a nice night at home. I stopped at Total Wine to get a couple bottles; I stopped at the grocery to get a nice steak and asparagus and fresh bread. We had steak, asparagus w/ hollandaise sauce, and bread with Italian dipping seasonings. It was fantastic, if I do say so myself. We had a nice zinfandel with it, and a Bordeaux for afterward, and sat out by the fire pit and reminiscenced about our camping trips and talked about what we wanted from the honeymoon. Such a nice night.

Saturday we didn't do much of anything during the day -- hung around the house and did a little shopping. Really I felt icky and kept taking it out on him -- I know, I know. I tried to stop but sometimes the word vomit just gets the best of me. So we went home and took showers and tried again. We met Acie and Tom for dinner and met a couple of their friends, and then went minigolfing with them. A much better end to the day, for sure. Christen won (he was only 1 above par) and I came in second. Love it! It was a grand time.

Sunday we went to Stacy's for a BBQ, and took Lola. She wasn't very polite and kept starting fights with Stacy's beau's dog, but they mostly had fun. We had a blast, and the food was excellent. Afterward I greatly wanted to go home and go to sleep, but for some reason I was up until midnight. Lola had the right idea; she plopped down on the living room floor as soon as we got home and was still there sleeping when we went to bed.

All in all, a great weekend, but one of these days I swear I'm going to get to sleep. I evidently am incapable of sleeping in, so maybe I'll try to go to bed early? Shocker :)


Running for nothing

Someone needs to tell Molly's owner that it is not in good etiquette to leave the double gates open at the dog park when yours is not the last dog leaving. Dumb bitch (the owner, not the dog). Last night I took Lola and Jazzy (mom's dog) and my brother to the dog park for a little while. Because of traffic we got there with only about 20 minutes until closing, but at least they could run around a little bit until we had to drag them back home. There were about 4 dogs still there, but they left very shortly after we got there. The last dog to leave was Molly, an older water spaniel (I think). We hung around for about 10 more minutes and then walked up to the gate where the dogs pushed right through and took off! Jazz was pretty easy to catch - he's fat and slow and obedient. Lola likes to run. It took me about 20 minutes of running to catch her, and then it wasn't even me that caught her. The maintenance dude caught up with her in his cart.

The silver lining? She took a monster dump in the people's side of the park, and since I was trying to catch her at the time I didn't have to clean it up :)


random meanderings

One of these days I'm going to wake up and actually want to get up to go to work. Not that it's going to happen any time soon, but maybe someday. It's not work, it's just the getting out of bed that's the problem. I don't have any problem getting up on the weekend (although this past weekend I slept in more than usual) but during the week it seems impossible. I was having a dream that I was giving birth with a bunch of other women who were also pregnant (read, though: I am not pregnant) and it was very surreal -- it didn't hurt at all, but I was trying to go to the bathroom first so I wouldn't have an "accident" while giving birth and then the arms just popped out and the nurse yanked the kid out of me by the arms and I just felt empty.

Friend Charlie from high school and his fiancée bought a house in my neighborhood - two streets over! I'm so excited to have friends so close! Not that it meant anything when I lived in Temple Terrace, since my friends in that neighborhood still never called or came over unless I made the effort. These friends are a little more extraverted though, so maybe we'll have better luck. I'm still hoping that my new neighbors are cool -- I never see them, and I'm not so good at initiating conversation when it involves knocking on the door and introducing myself. I was sort of hoping to see them outside so I could stop by. Charlie and Katie came over this weekend and celebrated their buy, and they might be coming over tonight to watch the BSC game -- Go Gators!

If I were Lola, I would be furious with me. We went to the dog park on Saturday and she played with all the other dogs. There was this other dog that looked exactly like Lola except she had very short hair all over, including her tail. It looked so good! So Christen and I decided to cut her hair, including her tail. I told Christen I felt like Delilah cutting off Samson's hair. It looks so bad! I'm getting used to it now, but I felt so bad for her when we first did it. Her tail was so cute! We were just getting so tired of the tumbleweeds of hair rolling across the wood floor all the time, so we thought if she had less hair then we would have less hair. Luckily, she doesn't seem to notice. That was not the case when she shaved her butt- she wouldn't walk with her back to us for 2 days. :) I hope it grows out soon enough.


More proof of my stupidity ... and Happy New Year!

So I've told you about my stupidity regarding the lost shoes (and no, VG, they weren't even my Steve Maddens, they were my stupid little black leather flip flops with the big flower on the front), so now let me tell you about my car.

This morning I was having a terrible and weird dream where Christen coached a softball team, and kept making us move because he hated stains and bugs and whenever he saw one he would make us pack up the team and move somewhere else. So I was had trouble getting out of bed because I was oddly intrigued by what would happen next (okay, who am I kidding; I hate getting out of bed anyhow for work). So I had only about 10 minutes to get ready and get out of the house.

10 minutes later I'm sitting in my car trying to start it, but the damn thing wouldn't start. I tried not to freak out; I'm going to be late, but more importantly, why won't my car start? Will Christen have to drive me to work? Will Shelley pick me up to hang out so I'm not stranded? Finally, I go into the house and hand Christen the keys. "You start my car. I can't get it to start." he says okay, and out we go to the garage. Once we get there, he looks down at the keys in his hand. "These are my keys. Of course you aren't going to start your car!"

Fudge it. I need to go back to bed and start over.


However, I'm here and, well I'm queer in the straight sense. Happy new year! My new year's resolutions are: to start taking the stairs at work, and to start working like mad to finish the wedding stuff so I'm not freaking out 2 weeks before it happens. However, the stairs have been put off until we move floors (I'll die going up 6 flights) except when I go up and down to the 4th and up to the 7th, because those will be good for me. I started working on the wedding stuff, pricing transportation from the church to the reception, bought a couple more things for the attendant's gifts, and made a list of what I still need to do so I don't forget anything. Hopefully the girls will keep me on track (by "the girls" I mean Shell and Shea, not "the girls" as in my rack ... although that would be interesting ...)

I hope your New Year's was great! Mine was pretty good; low-key and all that. The usual suspects and I went out for dinner and drinks until they kicked us out at 11pm, then went to K&S's to watch the ball drop. I fell asleep before it fell, was woken up for a New Year's kiss, and fell back asleep until they picked me up and drove me home. I'm no good at staying up that late. I had prepped myself; Friday night we went to Theresa's house for a party which was a lot of fun and I didn't get home until around 2am (so I slept in the car, I stayed awake while I was there!) and Saturday we spent the whole day out in Orlando shopping at the Outlet Mall, having a lovely peanut butter burger at Jungle Jim's (my fav-ourite), playing minigolf and perusing Downtown Disney and didn't get home until after 1am (okay okay, I slept in the car then too -- so sue me!) and Sunday I broke up a family fight and sat on the couch all day reveling in doing nothing. So I tried to get myself used to staying up late, but I ended up crashing. I don't think the bottle of wine had anything to do with it! I swear!

Last night we went to DSW for new shoes for Christen and I ended up getting 3 pair (Christen got 2). I got some black wedge peekaboo toe shoes, black strappy wedges, and my favorite: silver strappy wedges (the proper term for the color is "diamond glitter"). They rock -- so cool! The girls at work are not impressed by my description of them (I was told to "get out of my cube" by Juliette) So I'll have to wear them to show them how wrong they are. :) Plus I still have $30 of credit so I can use my $10 coupon when it's good in 2 weeks. Hurrah!

Anyhow, back to the gridstone. Yay for me! (Can you tell I'm trying to be extra pumped about the new year?)