About that time again...

Starting a new personal blog over here:

Not that I ever really write in this one anymore anyway.
Which means I doubt anyone even reads this anymore.


A Higher... Something

After a jam-packed day of Oktoberfest, beer drinking, bonfiring, and more beer drinking, I ended up in an amazing (albeit fairly drunken) conversation with two of my best friends about religion. I LOVE talking about religion. Not in a Bible-beating sort of way, not in an "I'm right and you're not" sort of way, but in a passionate, heated, conversational/informational kind of way. I LOVE hearing different opinions and stances and beliefs. Something about it just fires me up. I am very solid in my belief in a higher power, a higher something, in God. Yet my beliefs are quite liberal. Living in the Bible belt, yet being a firm believer in God, I find it difficult and stifling to engage in religious conversation. I realize that a majority of people who believe are very closed minded and thus I rarely get to talk about it. Which is sad. I don't like arguments and I don't like blanket statements, so for the most part, those kinds of conversations are out of the question. Most people can't discuss without those kinds of reactions. Anger tends to be a byproduct, so to find myself in a conversation on the topic that is actually enlightening, interesting, engaging and just conversational, I always find delightful. Some of the best conversations I've ever had have been about religion in groups of people who practice and believe all different religions or even none at all. Anywho, it pretty much made my evening. Well, that and the whole bonfire and beer drinking part probably didn't hurt.


Week of Weeks

This week's been an interesting one. It's felt twice as long as the average week yet I can't believe it's already the weekend. I've had something going on pretty much every night this last week. Not that anyone needs a rundown, but here goes.

Monday night I met a new hiking friend. His name is Preston and he's the brother of the husband of a co-worker's best friend. Random eh? We hung out for a couple hours over a beer and quesadillas (NOT a date). He's obsessed with hiking, really into cooking, works in horticulture and is nerdy in a non-technological way which I find refreshing, he's easy to talk to, laid back, and dare-I-say cute? I hope he'll be a good friend. I can't say I've got a crush on the boy, but I'm sure it's possible down the road. Right now, I'm just excited to have a potentially new mountain-crashing cohort.

Tuesday night I kicked off a drawing club! I'm trying to get some creative friends, co-workers and friends-of-co-workers together weekly to draw while possibly enjoying frosty beverages and enjoy some conversation. The first event was great! My co-workers Lauren, Elizabeth and Trey participated along with a friend of Elizabeth. It was a great time and I hope to keep it up and add to the group.

Wednesday night I cleaned my apartment, made homemade minestrone and experimented with my new French press. Not too exciting, but satisfying.

Thursday night I skipped out on a free show downtown to have girl's night with a friend of mine. We went to Rumours, a wine bar up the street, got annoyingly drunk, talked about work and boys and all your typical crap. We were loud and boisterous, spoke of things one only talks about when drunk and probably far too loudly while dropping far too many F-Bombs. It happens. It was a good time.

And tonight I had a dinner/bible study get-together with some girlfriends over homemade pizza, salad and brownies. We share concerns, prayers, praises, the week's events, our lives in general. It was nice. Truly. I can't say I'm as solidly devout as these girls are, but they help round me out and make me a better person. They are a great support system and just good people. And you can't go wrong with good people.

And as the week's evenings were packed and full of life, the days themselves were back and forth. I found out the Lynda project I was potentially offered isn't going to work out. If I brush up on my teaching skills, possibly in six months, but all in all I'm not all that disappointed. Which is odd for me. These things usually devastate me, but not so much this time. It actually felt like a bit of a relief. I also bought plane tickets to NYC to watch Morgan run the marathon and get to see my parents, sisters, cousins, aunt and uncle. My mom found out her dog, which she expected to have to put down this week, is going to be receiving some new joint treatments and is expected to live at least two more years, much more exciting than the few days my mom was expecting. I lost a $200 money order. I spent time in meetings about some exciting work initiatives that have me pumped about my job, scared of the timeline, excited for some challenges that lie ahead, and find myself in love with my job all over again.

I've been crazy busy, thinking about so many things, exciting things. Travel, work, boys, friends, good times, eating, drinking and general merriment. And all this thinking brings me around to this: I am 27 for less than 2 more weeks. I will be 28, two years shy of 30. I NEED to set some goals, work towards them, achieve them. This life is good. It's crazy, it's busy, it's moving fast and is far too short. I need to make the most of what I've got and go after the things I don't have and cherish every moment, thought, idea, friend, foe and experience.



I ended this week truly feeling like I've had a bad week. I've felt stressed out, which, despite a number of irons in the fire, I really shouldn't be as stressed out as I've been feeling. I've felt homesick, on which I blame the summer heat and ensuing cabin fever. Yet when I really look back at my week, it wasn't a bad week at all. My problem wasn't the week, but the folks I surrounded myself with. Between some crabby clients, friends having rough weeks, a friend who constantly complains and is depressed about life, to my sisters and their usual boy/friend/boyfriend dramas, to dramas with parents and just drama in general, I realize now that all that outside negativity really weighed me down. My week may have been slightly stressful, but was in no way a bad week.

This week, I am going to be positive. Not in that obnoxious way that some folks can be, but just generally happy. And I refuse to talk to any friends or family who are down on their lives. I can't handle it. For my own sanity, I need to take a week and break away from the sadness. I want to be there for friends and want to listen and hear them out, but for my own well-being I need to just step back a minute and look at how good my life is. Because my life is pretty darn great! It really is. I have a great job, great friends, a loving (albeit dramatic) family. I have some great opportunities I'm working on, am making use of my talents, which I'm lucky to have quite a few. I make decent money, live in a nice area in a nice apartment and have no reason whatsoever to be down on myself. NONE. YOU HEAR THAT BRAIN?! NONE! (ok, maybe I'm going crazy, but I can live with that).

I am going to run more this week. Eat better. Be more productive. Catch up with friends. Care more. And do my darndest to bring some cheer to my own life and that of others. I think tomorrow I will bake a Tandy Cake to bring in to work on Monday. Nothing starts a week off better than a cake topped with peanut butter and chocolate.


I am creepy

Or supposedly, I have a creepy smile while I sit and work at my desk. I'm not sure how I feel about that. I think mostly self-conscious.


Nothing Exciting to See Here Folks

My weekend wasn't overly exciting. Or really exciting at all, but I got a bit accomplished. Some tasks frivolous, some productive. I spent yesterday working on some Lynda stuff. If you're familiar with Lynda.com, you'll know that they offer some seriously top-notch tutorials and are pretty well-known in the design and tech community. Awesomely enough, I got a call last week, thanks to Marc, a co-worker of mine (he's an amazing networker). And this call was from Lynda, asking if I'd be interested in creating an HTML Email-themed tutorial. Which is obvious, since that's what I do all day every day, but still exciting and butterfly-inducing. Needless to say, there's heaps of paperwork, lots and lots to do this week. The gig's not final, they have to see if I'm a fit, but let's just say I'm WAY excited. And WAY nervous, in the best way possible.

Anywho, I spent a good bit of time on that this weekend, and just finished revising a business card design for a friend. I also tweaked my other blog design and twitter theme. Nothing major there. Lots of computer time put in this weekend, and could technically afford to put in more, but my peepers are tired. Much more computer time than I would like for a weekend for sure, but all of it worth it.

In non-technological things, I went to Radnor Lake TWICE this weekend. I hiked all the trails that are open and am sad that South Cove trail is still closed due to flood damage. It's my favorite trail. I am also kicking myself for not bringing a camera either day. It's so beautiful there and I inevitably run into a deer or two or five. One of these days I'll think to bring one.

I also bought some new felt shoes, a button down flower-print shirt and pink T from Target, went to Barnes & Noble to catch up on magazine consumption, Acolyte-ed at church and enjoyed coffee at Fido. All in all a semi-busy and mostly enjoyable weekend. Not very social, but these things happen.

Things I did NOT do:
Clean my apartment
Clean my bathroom
Clean my car out
Work on illustrations
Socialize (well, I did a little bit)

1:18am and I'm just now thinking of bed. This is a habit I should really try and change. Truly.

Sidenote: A friend of mine has talked me into watching Battlestar Galactica. I'm kind of excited to start a new [old] show, regardless of the nerd factor (like that's ever stopped me from doing anything before). I just have to find someone with some DVDs to share and I'm all set. I'm sure I'll post ramblings of it as I go along. And be sure to expect some Dexter Season 4 updates coming in the next month or so. When did I start watching so much TV??? Oy.


Weight Loss, Wellness and a year of BRCA

I'm back on the WW wagon. I'm a bit reticent to mention it this time around, mostly because it's the third time around and I'm trying to lose weight I've lost before. The neverending frustration of the battles of the scales! The good news is this is the best I've done on it so far. I'm down 8.5lb. in 4 weeks and am back to jogging and have actually made it out to hike around Radnor Lake here and there despite the miserable heat. I'm hoping that by September I'll be in prime backpacking shape.

My goal this time around is to lose about 25-30lb. by my birthday, and so far so good. This also spurs from last year's BRCA1 news, which I don't feel like blogging about, and if anyone is actually reading this, chances are they already know that story. My doctor says the best way to decrease my almost imminent chances of breast and/or ovarian cancer is to lose the weight, eat right and exercise. Limit alcohol and just live a healthier life. Following WW pretty much ensures ALL those things happen, and I'm not depriving myself of any major food groups or good times with friends, so it's really a win win way to go.

It's been about a year since the gene testing and almost a year since finding out and I'm just now taking it seriously. I feel like when I found out I was petrified then went into a state of indifference, moved into a state of denial and have now come back around to reason and am taking the issue seriously, with almost 20 extra pounds to deal with. I have my next doctor's appointment at the end of September and am hoping to have shed some pounds by then. She's not the friendliest of doctors and if I can push it in her face (along with the obvious benefits of living healthier) I'll be a happy camper.

This time around on WW I'm going the meetings route, and while at times it feels like I'm in an AA meeting for fat people, it's a nice support group and everyone there is so happy and motivating. Some of the folks there (women AND men) have lost 150-200 or more pounds and it's so awesome to hear their stories and how their lives have been changed. Regardless of the weight loss issues, it's nice to be around such positive people. It makes me happy to hear how people change their lives for the better. Too many people live in their excuses (I'm no exception on various topics) and it's really great to see people stand up for themselves and live their lives to the fullest.

Anywho, I'm not to a weight yet where I actually feel like I've accomplished anything, but I'll be there soon enough. I keep trying to visualize myself being 25lb. lighter by the end of October and will be so amazed/ecstatic/thrilled/excited to actually reach that goal. 28 isn't really a big number, no major importance, but one year closer to 30 and I plan on going in to my 30s with more gusto than imaginable, cancer-threats be damned!