Monday, September 28, 2009

Cooking for one isn't fun

The hubs is out of town for this entire week and I'm left home alone to fend for myself. Okay, no, not really, it's not that drastic.

This week I get to do all those crazy little things that the hubs can't stand. For one, I get to wear my tie-dyed t-shirts while jamming to Dave Matthews. I'm also going to avoid watching any O's games! Ha!!!! I've already painted my nails a super dark purple color, which the hubs can't stand (but, that one I do all the time). I think I'm going to head over the library and check out a few classic movies to watch. I think curling up on the couch, with a bottle of wine, and enjoying a classic like "Gone with the Wind" sounds like a perfect evening.

I've got a girl's night planned for one night later this week with my best friend. I'm picking up her up from the airport and then she's going to gloat all about her ten day Italian vacation.

I'm going to get in some quality time in with my brother's girlfriend. We're going to head out to either a musuem, art gallery, or end up walking around a botanical garden.

Of course, there is one tiny aspect of all this single-girl lifestyle that makes me cringe- cooking for one. My grocery cart looked pathetic as I made my way down the store aisles yesterday. The hubs usually sustains himself on a diet of takeout, Mac & Cheese, ham, and chicken Alfredo when I'm away from home. Basically, he eats all the things I can't stand. He's not a picky eater, so he eats whatever I want to eat so I don't have quite the same lust for certain foods when I'm by myself. Plus, arugula is the one thing he can't stand that I love and the arugula selection didn't look so great at the grocery store.

It's going to be a challenge to not give in and survive on a Ramen and tv dinner diet this week. I'm going to attempt to cook a small meal each night and hopefully I stick to my plan. I did get myself a small treat at the grocery store and I'm banking on that to get me through the week. Yes, I'm 26 years old and I love Reese's Puffs, go ahead and judge me. Now, I just have to finish these before the hubs gets home or find a place to hide the evidence of my childlike snack habits.

What do you do when you're significant other is out-of-town for a few days?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

InStyle subscription for $5!!!

If you're a fan of InStyle Magazine then I suggest you hop over to Amazon and pick up a year's subscription for only $5.

Yup, five dollars. There are a ton of five dollar deals going on right now, but I'd prefer a non-greasy magazine that keeps coming for a whole year as opposed to a single sandwich or meal.

Here's the link. Enjoy!!!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Pumpkin decorating ideas

I love Halloween. It was my favorite holiday as a child and I still love decorating for Halloween. The hubs thinks I'm slightly crazy when it comes to Halloween and I have feeling he'll object to any decorating I do this year since we had only ONE trick-or-treater stop by our house last year.

I would love to decorate my house in a manner similar to the amazing Mrs. Brooklyn Limestone, but the hubs would freak out and that's not a good thing.

But, the hubs is scheduled to be out of town right before Halloween, so that gives me a few days to decorate without hearing any of his objections. (Insert creepy Halloween laughter here)

There are plenty of ways to decorate pumpkins, but this year I'm honing in on a few of these ideas for a few interior pumpkins. An added bonus, most of these ideas call for fake pumpkins, so they can be stored and re-used for years to come. All links have more pictures and full directions.

Faux Mercury Glass Pumpkins from The DIY Showoff

Decoupaged Poem Pumpkin from Mrs. B

Decoupage Pumpkin from Everyday Artistry

Decoupage Leaf Pumpkin from BHG

Copper-Leafed Pumpkin from BHG

I think this one would look really cute with white pumpkins.

So there you go. Those are a few of the ideas I've seen that I would like to try this year for a few indoor pumpkins. Any other suggestions?

Monday, September 14, 2009

13.1 Miles

Yesterday, I ran farther than I've ever run before. I ran my first half-marathon. Yeah, I'm still tired.

The hubs and I left Saturday afternoon and headed down to my best friend B's apartment in Gaithersburg. Then, we got up early on Sunday morning and B and I joined 2500 other runners for a early morning run.

The weather was perfect. Yes, it was humid, but the temperatures were only in the 60s so it wasn't anything to complain about. I did feel bad that the hubs had to get up at 5:30 in the morning and basically stand around and do nothing. It probably wasn't the most fun for him, nor very tiring, but I still felt bad.

I had three main goals for this race:
1. Finish under my own strength. No stretchers or oxygen masks for me!
2. Run the entire time.
3. Finish somewhere near 2 hours. Yeah, a sub-2 hour finish was my real goal, but everyone and their mother told me to be a bit lenient for my first half.

B and I are somewhere in that grouping.

The hubs saw us gliding past him and he didn't have time to snap a picture. Of course I asked him to take a ton of pictures and that translated into thirteen pictures. That included the pre-requist pre- and post-race photos that I demanded he take. Yay, I'm still working on the hubs and his anti-picture taking stance. Seriously, I ran 13.1 miles and the hubs didn't take a single picture of me actually running. That's probably a good thing, because I'm sure I wasn't a very attractive runner yesterday.

Anyway, I made a few rookie mistakes. You know that expression, "less is more." That expression doesn't hold true for certain things, like Body Glide (an anti-chafing application). I have chafing in areas that a person should never experience chafing. Rookie mistake number 1. Then, B and I went out way too fast. I wasn't strong enough to tell her I had to slow down. I told her I had to slow down and then I didn't. Going out too fast really killed my energy and every step past mile 10 was a battle. My final rookie mistake was not slowing down during the water and Gatorade stops. For the first 8 miles I would just cruise through the aid stations and whatever liquid I was able to throw back was all I got. At the mile 8 aid station I tried to drink some Gatorade and it ended up going up my nose. For the last two aid stations I actually had to walk through them in order to drink my Gatorade and water.

I was thoroughly confused once we crossed the finish line. B and I saw the guys, yet somehow my legs weren't ready to make a turn. Basically I did what can be described as a drunken stupor over to the guys. Thankfully, I had a better excuse than being drunk at 9am.

I think I did pretty well. I've had a cold for the past week and I didn't run at all because I didn't want to risk making myself sicker by running. I took eight days off from running right before the biggest race of my life. Probably not the best idea, but I finished the race so it couldn't have been that bad of a mistake.

Back to my goals:
1. Finish under my own strength- Check! I'm not going to lie, those last three miles were the most difficult miles I've run in my entire life. I really, really, really wanted to start walking, but I just couldn't do it. I wouldn't have made it without B being there for me every step of the way. I kept yelling at her to leave me and run faster, but she wouldn't listen. I'm so happy she's stubborn and wouldn't listen to me.
2. Run the entire time- Check! I'm going to count a check on this one. At first I didn't because I walked through two aid stations and then a bunch of people told me I was crazy! One guy actually countered that since I started well behind the starting line and ran up to the start line, that made up for walking through two measly aid stations.
3. Finish somewhere near 2 hours- Check! Yes, I really wanted to get in under two hours and up until mile 9 I was on track to do so. Then, after mile 10 I fell apart. Everything hurt all at once and each step was a struggle. It was during these miles that I realized I had to re-evaluate my goal of ever finishing a marathon.

So, I did it! I survived to tell the tale and I plan on doing another half sometime soon. I didn't sign up for the Baltimore Running Festival because I wanted to see how I felt after my first half-marathon. Of course, now the half portion of that race is sold-out. I need to find another half for B and I to do this year. The hubs made a verbal commitment to run a 10k with us, so now I just need to keep him honest.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Pro-pics are up!

Yay!!!! My sister's pro-pics have been blogged. If you want to see a few gorgeous wedding photos, then take a hop, skip or jump over to the incredibly talented Matt Ramos Blog.

Seriously, Matt is incredibly talented and I'm so happy my sister picked him to photographer her wedding. Anyone getting married in New York or the surrounding area should definitely consider hiring Matt and his wonderful team. You don't even have to take my word for how amazing he is, just look at his website.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Double decker puppies

There are three different dog beds in our house. There are also two human beds that the dogs like to nap on from time to time. Throw in an arm chair and another whole half of a couch and it seems like the dogs have plenty of space to nap. God forbid they actually sleep on the floor every once in awhile. Gasp!!!

No, instead they decide to sleep bunk bed style on the couch.

Really guys, you can spread out. Or not.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

My sister got married!!!

My sister and I seem like complete opposites of each other.

She loves pink and I hate pink (the color, not the singer).

She has curly hair, whereas I have poker straight hair.

She has curves and I only have one (my bum).

She's shortish and I'm tallish.

She has a great voice and my only chance of getting on American Idol is to be one of those horrible people the judges make fun of in the first few episodes.

She's a girly girl and I'm a tomboy.

She snorts when she laughs and I make fun of her.

She loves strawberrys and I hate them.

She likes rap and R&B and I like rock alternative and country music.

She was a cheerleader in high school. I don't even have to dignify that with a response (I'm kidding!).

Even with all of those differences aside, we're totally related and there's no denying that. For her wedding over the weekend I sucked it up and just went with her pinkness overload. Seriously, she wanted to have her bridesmaids wear pink dresses!

The bridesmaids carried hot pink roses with bear grass accents. The bride carried Eskimo roses with pink crystal accents. All of the bouquets were hand-tied with satin ribbon. My aunt Ev provided all of the flowers.

see- pink crystals!!!

pink satin purse. Okay, I made that for my sister, so that's my bad. I didn't get a single picture of the ring bearer pillow that I made for my nephew. He didn't want any pink either because he was pinked out as well.

Ugh, the only picture I have of just the hubs and me is blurry. Go figure! That's what I get for not having my camera out at every possible second.

Most of the ceremony photos the hubs took came out blurry. It's not his fault. The lighting in the church was really dim and there was no flash photography allowed. Even it all its blurriness, this picture still tells a very funny story. See the red head guy second from the right? Yeah, that's my brother. He's a big guy. Normally, he's the biggest dude in a room. He looked small on Sunday, which is hilarious! Those guys couldn't move an inch during the ceremony because if they did they would have knocked each other off their respective chairs. It was so funny. During the rehearsal Rev. Chuck kept commenting that he didn't realize the Giants offensive line was present. Those are some very large men. The groom is 6'5", so I think that gives an indication of how tall those guys are.

Walking down the aisle in the historic church. Really, I'm thinking "do not fall! Do not fall! Whatever you do, don't fall! Goodness, why did I decide to wear 4" heels!"

They're married!!! Shaka is thinking, "how much longer do we have to sit up here?"

Hanging out in the church while portraits were being taken by the wedding photographers. Aunt Ev got in on the pink action.

My brother and I after the ceremony. At this point the bride and groom went off to the Vanderbilt Mansion for their portraits. I can't wait to see more of those photos!

Seriously, everyone had some pink!

My sister, nephew, and me hanging out in the bridal suite.

My new brother-in-law popping the bubbly.

My dad and his best friend, who stood up next to my dad at his own wedding nearly 32 years ago.

My Oma and my Grandpa Joe. More pink!!! Can you believe my grandpa is 90 years old? Ninety years young I say!

The maid of honor, the bride and me! I think we were all exhausted by pictures at this point.

Yes, the hubs was making fun of me because during the reception my sister's kick butt photographers put up a slide show of some photos they took earlier in the day. In essence I was taking pictures of pictures. Lame, possibly, but the photos were amazing (um, the ones the pros took, not so much on mine)

My picture of their picture doesn't do it justice. Seriously, it was gorgeous!!!

My nephew is such a ham.

I could post even more pictures, but I'll wait to reveal the pro pictures. Based on the few that I saw I know that they are going to be top notch and nothing I could share would do my sister's wedding any justice. The weekend was so crazy that I didn't even get a single picture with my mom. I can't believe that, but my SD card doesn't lie.

The next morning everyone who stayed at the hotel had breakfast together. I didn't even know that a Nintendo DSI could take pictures. Apparently, my nephew wasn't playing video games like I suspected all day. Instead, he was taking pictures of his mum getting married and wanted to show her the next morning. Seriously, how cute is that?

It only took me two showers to get all the hair spray and gel out of my hair! I was a little worse for the wear the next day and I wasn't happy about spending five hours in a car to get back home. Have no fear Aunt Ev, the pink flowers are still alive and they're in the vase you gave me. The hubs said the vase is really pretty and we should use it more often. I told him one way to get more use out of it was for him to buy me flowers more often. We'll see how that goes.

I will definitely be posting a link later in the week for the pro pictures. You'll get a pink overload when those photos come in!

Jean and Shaka, I hope you two are having a wonderful time traveling to and in Hawaii. D and I were so happy and proud to be a part of your wedding, but we're even more excited to be a part of the rest of your lives. I'm giving you a few months of non-baby talk and they you better start pumping out a kid so mom, dad, grandma, Oma and everyone else gets off my back!!!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Virgin FreeFest 2009

Last year for our one year anniversary the hubs and I went to the Virgin Mobile Festival held in Baltimore. This year the festival was scaled down in size and moved out to the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, but we figured driving a few extra minutes wasn't that big of a deal. While the festival itself was smaller there was one major selling point in its favor- it was free! The organizers decided the economy was terrible and therefore they were going to give away tickets and ask people to make a small donation to charity.

Pretty cool, right?

Of course, a bunch of greedy dirt bags scooped up a bunch of tickets and put them up on Ebay, Craigslist and StubHub for hundreds of dollars. Not cool at all! Those greedy people were the reason the hubs and I couldn't get any tickets when they were still free. I figured there was no way I was going to pay some scalper and just had to admit defeat and realize that the hubs and I would miss out on this year's concert. Fortunately, a few more tickets were released late last week through Ticketmaster. Now, they weren't free, but only charging $10 per concert ticket makes them practically a giveaway in mind.

So we went and we had a grand old time.

We went later in the day and saw Taking Back Sunday, Jet, The Bravery, Weezer and Blink-182. Not too shabby! Those were just the bands on one stage.

Now, the hubs and I soon figured out at last year's concert that the creative minds behind the Virgin Festivals like to think of somewhat odd and interesting side acts to include in their lineup. By far the oddest side act we saw this year was this little number.

You paid money in order to throw a water balloon at a complete and total stranger driving a go-cart. Whatever go-cart driver got hit in the head the least won. Very, very, very bizarre.

I'm not sure what exactly this says about the nature of our humanity, but the go-cart drivers seemed to be enjoying themselves.

Never one to shy away from making a public spectacle, Richard Branson served beer, oversaw a sky diving show and sprayed a few concert goers with champagne. But hey, the guy make it a free show, so he's cool in my book.

We have a Mark Hoppus sighting!!!

See those little dots near the helicopter? Yeah, those are people!!! A live video feed on the huge jumbo screens showed these two guys jumping out of the helicopter. Apparently, they didn't suffer from any form of acrophobia.

Oh yeah, there was so music at the concert.

Definitely one of the better Sundays we've had this summer!