Monthly Archives: January 2013

Year in Review 2012: Final

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All right, all right, I am finally wrapping up my extremely breathy year in review!  Hopefully I haven’t bored you to tears yet.  I’m just going to jump right in to my last trip of the year!

At the end of November, I took a trip to Xenia, OH.  What’s in Xenia, you ask?  Well, that’s where my dear old dad went to high school.  Xenia High School created a sports Hall of Fame last year, and this year my dad was inducted into it for his achievements in football, basketball and track.

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coolest dad ever?

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It was awesome to watch my dad  be honored.  It’s one thing to hear about it from him but it’s quite another to hear other people share stories of his greatness.  The speeches were a riot and it was a really fun, inspiring atmosphere.   I also got to spend time with both my immediate and extended family so it was really enjoyable to catch up with everybody.

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my brother put it best, “do you know who my father is?!”

 

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with my cousin and aunt

The most inspiring thing I heard all weekend was that the kids that go to that high school now walk by the hall of fame, point to it, and say “That’s going to be me up there one day.”

Christmas came quickly, didn’t it?  Every Christmas Eve I go over to my friend Kimmy’s house for her parent’s party.  They always have tasty champagne punch and delicious food.

Photo: happy christmas!

happy christmas!

Photo: best christmas present ever! only had to wait twelve months to get it.

Kimmy caught this at a show last January and saved it to give me until Christmas!

My brother came down to Texas for a few weeks to spend Christmas with my Dad and I.  It was great to have him here, as usual.  We usually don’t do a Christmas tree or lights or anything, but this year my dad put up a few lights outside and I put up a small Christmas tree.  We all made a big Christmas dinner (similar to Thanksgiving), and relaxed the rest of the day, watching movies and napping.

Unfortunately, the week before Christmas, one of my old friends passed away suddenly.  His funeral was the day after Christmas.  Clint was just a big bucket of fun.  There was absolutely no way anyone could ever hang out with him and NOT have fun.

this is a nice picture of us, but…

this is a more accurate representation of the times we had…

He put a smile on the face of anyone he came into contact with and I know he is greatly missed by scores of people, including myself.  Up to that point I was lucky enough never to have been to a funeral for someone my own age.  I really hope I don’t have to do it again until I am very old.   It’s tragic to see life cut short so young and continues to make me think about how short life actually could be, every day since it happened.  One positive that came out of the tragedy– it brought my old friends together again for the first time in around six years.

celebrating our friend

New Year’s Eve was very low key.  I was originally going to go to Austin, but my car wasn’t cooperating so I ended up staying right here in Dallas.  I actually had a very relaxing, four-day “staycation” that culminated on NYE by spending the day at King Spa.  After that I went home, turned on the fireplace, made some hors d’oeuvres, drank prosecco and watched the clock turn to 2013!

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artichokes, tomato, fresh cracked pepper on salt and pepper tricuits

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New Years Day dinner: fried chicken, fried corn! kale greens (for money) black eyed peas (for luck) and jalapeno-cheddar cornbread (from scratch)

What do I want out of this year?  Well, hopefully 2013 will continue to bring clarity for me.  Last year, first finding out how much fear I actually have, followed by finding out that (after MANY years of joking about it) I actually AM a full blown introvert opened up an entirely new level of consciousness for me.  My personality, feelings and actions became much easier for me to understand and that knowledge has set me free.  Realizing that I’m not actually an all-around miserable person has brought me a lot of peace that I have lacked for many years.

This year I have two very specific goals that I’m not going to go into full detail with right now.  But, I can say that for a very, very, VERY long time I feel like I have repressed and downplayed the creative and artistic side of my personality.  I’ve never been particularly confident in my abilities in the arts, but as I’ve reflected on my past and look toward my future, I’m starting to notice that they are of great significance in my life– and it’s helped me figure out exactly what I want to do.  Of course I’ll keep you updated on each journey when the time is right.  What are your resolutions and goals for this year?

Thanks for reading the saga, apparently, that was 2012.  Til next time!

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Year in Review 2012 pt. 4

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So a couple of fun things happened in August!  You might have noticed how many sweets I bragged about eating on my trip to California, so once I got back I decided to cash in my Groupon for Psycho Gym.  And psycho it was…a crazy, kettle bell, circuit training, boot camp workout, with each day harder than the last.  I think I went something like 15 times, the other 15 I was literally too sore or too worn out to go.  There was a real sense of accomplishment that came from completing what felt like a thirty day punishment for something I didn’t even do.   I’m definitely going to do it again!

I started my job at Trader Joe’s in August and the rest is pretty much history!  It’s been awesome, I really enjoy working there.  I’m also really excited to have health insurance for the first time since 2007! It’ll be weird to get sick and not have to scavenge through multiple medicine cabinets, drawers and containers looking for old, leftover medicine!  It’s the little things in life.

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When September rolled around, I could only look forward to the end of it.  Why?  The fair!!  I set a personal record this year by going five times!

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yes, i’m wearing my friend’s faces on my shirt

I know, I’m sick but I had fun every single time.  Whatever work I did at Psycho Gym was gone after eating all the deep fried deliciousness that I ate.  My favorite thing, in hindsight, was absolutely the Fried Samoa Girl Scout Cookies.  Good. Ness.  They were amazing.

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having another one in t-minus 9 months

I LOVE the fair.

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the only ride I will get on at the fair is the texas star

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nick cage in his sexy days as depicted on a rollercoaster

with the besties

awwww.

Photo: "ebony and ivory" taking over the fair!

last picture with big tex before he burned up

In addition to fair-going, fall included early voting, my first 5k, welcoming my friend Amber’s baby, Layla, into the world, getting settled in at Trader Joe’s and at my new, weekly nanny job and getting an awesome new phone!

Photo: sweet angel, looking so pretty in pink. so glad I got to meet layla rose today Amber Hunt-Harper

Layla

The only downside to fall was that a major part of my daily routine disappeared.   At the end of October it was announced that Danceaton would no longer be offered at 24 hour fitness.  And after the fair!  That’s just cruel… I was pretty heartbroken about it.  I still miss it, but have had to find other workouts.  What I REALLY miss though, is seeing my friends all the time.

Thanksgiving was awesome!  I woke up really early to join a few coworkers for a game of flag football.  I didn’t play, of course, but I had a great time watching and drinking mimosas.

charlotte and I!

My dad and I made dinner and Holly joined us to eat, obviously! We love having her around.  The three of us didn’t even make a dent.

After dinner, I got to spend time with friends, friends of friends, and family of friends.  It was a great night and I really thought last Thanksgiving would be tough to beat!  I had a blast.

Well, FINALLY next time I will get to my last trip of the year, saying goodbye to a friend, Christmas and New Years.  Thanks for sticking with me this long!  I’m not usually so wordy, I’m not sure what happened this year! Til next time!

Year in Review 2012 pt. 3

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Hey friends, happy new year!  I just realized this will probably a few more installments than last year! This one will be the longest because I had a really great summer.

The months leading up to June and the entire month of June was spent getting ready to throw a baby shower!  I was so excited to learn that my friend of over 14 years was having a baby girl.  We all know how I feel about babies and I wanted to throw little Sophie a really great shower.

The theme was split between a bright, colorful garden theme and Winnie the Pooh/Hundred Acre Woods.

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beautiful cake by another old friend from high school!

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love letters to sophie

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diaper cake

The shower was tons of fun, I was so happy to be a part of the celebration.  Four days after the shower I flew to California, where I would spend the next three weeks! I got to Los Angeles on the Fourth of July.  We spent the next few days at the beach and exploring.  I also got to celebrate my birthday in one of my favorite cities in the country.

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everything’s beachy keen!

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magical birthday wish…i’m blowing out a sparkler, from an onion. still counts!

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rooftop birthday celebration continues with holly and the secret state

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what is a birthday, if you don’t get dressed up as random characters and paint the town red?

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hilarity ensues

Some highlights were my birthday, obvi!  I also got to see some stand-up comedy at the Laugh Factory.  There was actually a decent sized scandal that arose out of that night for surprise guest Daniel Tosh.  It was interesting to read the news stories since the entire thing went down one row in front of me .   I also saw the Dan Band live, which is something I always wanted to do.  You would recognize them from Old School and The Hangover.

After I left la la land, I headed north. My brother lives just outside of San Francisco so I got to come bother him for two and a half weeks.  The first big thing that we did was go camping with a bunch of his friends.  Being as afraid of bugs/not resistant to cold, I haven’t camped very much in my life so I didn’t really know what to expect.  This is what I got:

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i love california

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in the light

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sunset

Camping activities included pinatas…

Hello Kitty pinatas and jammies

Hello Kitty pinata and jammies

my loot!

my loot!

and dancing, because there was a DJ booth set up, with generator.  It was so much fun!  I also have to mention the fantastic food and build your own crepe station they had set up the next morning.  I’ve never seen anything like it, but if I ever go camping again, it needs to be like this!

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spinnin beats!

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yummy spread!

Second big event was our ice cream walk.  San Francisco has some great ice cream spots and at a BBQ, one of my brother’s friends had the brilliant idea that we should go on an ice cream walk. We went to the three most popular ice cream places: Mitchell’s, Humphry Slocombe, and BiRite.   We also stopped at one coffee shop to combat the sugar shock.  We honestly had to get BiRite’s to go because we were physically unable to consume any more sugar by that time. I got toasted almond ice cream at Mitchell’s and brown butter pecan at BiRite.  I can’t remember what I got at Humphry Slocombe that day, but they have the weirdest ice cream flavors ever!  Government cheese, Elvis: the fat years, mushroom, salt and pepper…it’s wild stuff.

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Mmmmm

Weirdly enough, they were serving Humphry Slocombe’s secret breakfast ice cream (bourbon, cornflakes) with my bourbon pecan pie dessert a few days later at Umami Burger.  The most crow I ate all year was at Umami Burger in San Francisco when they wouldn’t let me make any substitutions for my turkey burger.  I was so mad and all I kept saying was “This better be the best *expletive* turkey burger I’ve ever had in my life!!” over and over.  It totally was, it was so delicious!

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I can’t wait to go back!

The big finish to my trip to Cali was going to Yosemite!  My brother and I took a day trip up there to see the sprawling, natural beauty.  I would describe it to you, but I think it’ll be said better with pictures.

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I headed back to Texas the day after that.  I had a great time in California, and I never want to leave once I’m there.  I’ll start the last four months of the year next time, it’ll include my new job at Trader Joe’s, the most psycho gym I’ve ever been to, the end of Danceaton as I knew it, and more!  Til then!