Monday, October 29, 2012

I am still breathing...and alive

I know you are all concerned...rest assured I am still alive. 

My sob story slash excuse for not blogging lately is:
1. I have literally been fighting off random colds/viruses/bacterial infections for going on 5 weeks, so I haven't felt like writing.
2. I broke my computer...so I have had to figure out how to get everything off of it and on to poor Joe's computer...so blogging has hit the back burner.
3. I am in luuuvvvv...and with that comes less time I want to spend on my computer and more time I want to spend with my boyfriend...I know, vomit..blah blah, I am just being honest.

Basically, finding a balance in my life right now has proven to be pretty tough.  I swear I am trying to figure out a good system because I really do love blogging.  Hang in there...I will get my act together soon people!!!

In the meantime stay warm and don't blow away in this weather!!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Turbo..and other random things

So…once again I have been slacking in the blogging department.   With school starting at work my new job description also began and so I have been super busy with work.  I am now in the classroom part of the day and then back to my regular job at the health center for the remainder of the day. 

It has been really interesting and a huge learning experience to work more directly with kids on the autism spectrum…and because of this I am also more exposed to all of the bugs and sicknesses that little kiddos share around.

As a result I am currently laying in bed hacking my lungs out with barely a voice to talk with…blah!

I have so many fun things that I could blog about right now, but I honestly just don’t feel like concentrating long enough to put together any of those blog posts  (so check back later when my lungs are back to normal) so for now I am going to keep it simple.

I would like to introduce you all to:  THE TURBO

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This little drink was brought to my attention by Joe’s friend, Seancey.  I am not sure if he accidently spilled one into the other and decided it tasted good, or if he just made it up one day.  Either way The Turbo consists of mixing Miller Lite and Smirnoff ice. 

Before you become dramatic and make a gagging sound at the thought of mixing these two things together you should actually try it.  Against all odds and everything I thought possible this little drink is actually…not bad at all, and pretty refreshing…not to mention cheap. 

So next time you are trying to figure out what to bring to that tailgate, throw in a couple of Miller Lites and a few Smirnoff Ice’s and silently combine the two on the side, ask someone to take a taste and when they love it…then tell them what they are drinking.  You could possibly be the hit of the party…and if that is the case make sure you thank Seancey for inventing this deliciously refreshing unique beverage… The Turbo!!!

Monday, September 3, 2012

The first half of life...

As I sat at the dentist office the other day in between getting my fourth and fifth cavities filled...

***Side Note: I have four more to go on the other side of my head tomorrow. Haven't been to the damn dentist in 5 or 6 years. I clearly learned my lesson people. I floss occasionally and brush at least twice a day...GO TO THE DENTIST TWICE A YEAR!!!***

...they handed me the magazine Ladies Home Journal while I patiently and numbly waited for the dentist.  My first thought: "Do they think I am a fifty year old women, why are they handing me this magazine over, say...a People magazine?" Of course, I am not saying anything against a fifty year old women...I love you all, but I just think that magazine tends to gear towards women in their 40's, 50's, 60's and then some. 

Clearly I was put in my place when I started reading this magazine.  There was an article interviewing Katie Couric.  She was talking about turning 55 and how it was a little scary for her. She spoke about entering into the second half of her life and how it made her realize all of the things she wanted to still accomplish and how it made her realize all of the things that were REALLY important. 

For some reason thinking about life in that way stopped me in my tracks.  Let's say the average life expectancy for a person in this day and age ranges from 76-82 years which means the first half of your life is over at the tender age of around 40. 

Suddenly writing about being nervous to turn 30 seemed down right silly.  Suddenly my 30's are seeming like the last final years to put my life in order...the final years to make sure everything is on track so that I am ready and prepared to relax and enjoy the final 40 or so years of my life (the second half)

I don't mean this to sound like I am in full panic mode...because that is not the case.  This was just a wake up call for me. It just made me stop and and remember how short life really is...how I need to worry about the things that matter, the things I can control...and stop worrying about the things that don't matter in the long run, stop stressing about the things I have no control over. 

I am still in the first half of my life...hopefully...and I was reminded reading this that I need to take advantage of that. I am almost 32 years old....not 82.  I have so MANY options and adventures laid out in front of me and now is the time to really live.  Now is the time for me to be as active as possible...while my knees still work. Now is the time for me to explore what really inspires and motivates me in life and follow that! 

My 20's were there so that I could make mistakes and figure out who I really am and gain confidence in that. I learned so much in my 20's but I enjoy being in my 30's.

That article reminded me that I need to finally face my fears and jump head first into that abyss of the unknown and swim my way to the other side grabbing hold of all that is important to me and inspiring to me.  (That sentence may have been a bit dramatic, ha)

In the second half of my life I want to be a person that doesn't look back and wonder why I didn't grab a hold of life and really live while I could...I don't want to turn 40 and realize I haven't been living the life I want to be living... I don't want to turn 40 and be uninspired and unhappy and wonder "what if I would have done this...?" 

Of course age is just a number, and I am in no way saying that by the time you turn 40 if you haven't done all the things you have wanted to do you should give up and hide in a dark room...no!  I am simply saying 40 because of the article...40 is just a number here.

My point is simple: I don't want to wake up one day and realize I wasted my life worrying and not doing. I don't want to wake up and realize I played it safe but at the cost of being uninspired. I want to be happy...and that is all.

And so...I hope to blog a little bit more about the first half of my life and how I am living every moment in that moment.  I hope to remember this wake up call and write about my journey into the second half of my life.  I am so happy right now and I intend on remaining in this state of happiness and building on it.

Life is short...whether in the first half or second half of your life...there is still time.  Live...smile...love...be fearless...laugh...life is short.  Surround yourself with who and what is most important to you every single day....and go to the dentist twice a year :)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Key West

I know, I know…I have gotten really bad about blogging again.  It seems like just when I really get in a good groove life takes over and blogging seems to be the lowest on my list of things to do for the day.  In an attempt to try and get you up to speed on my August…the most important and most amazing thing I did this month is family vacation to Key West. 

I have always loved Key West and have been lucky enough to visit more than the average person gets to and this trip didn’t disappoint.  The main difference in this visit over all of my others is that we rented bikes.  My dad, mom, sister, family friend Mike and myself woke up every morning and hopped on our bikes.  We rode all over the island…from bar to restaurant to beach to shops, back to the bar and than another bar. 

But seriously…well, seriously we did ride our bikes on a mini bar hop several days because in all honesty there are soooo many really cool bars down there.  One of our favorites was The Rum Bar which is located right on Duval Street.  It is part of a super cute bed a breakfast type place called The Speakeasy Inn.  I am not sure if we loved the drinks (below is a Pain Killer…seriously my favorite drink EVER) or if we loved the bartender more: Bahama Bob. Either way I think we made it to this bar EVERY SINGLE DAY…and I was perfectly happy with that decision.

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A few more pictures from the trip:

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I LOVE, LOVE LOVE this picture!!!  The sunset is a celebration in Key West and we didn’t even have to leave our deck.  Every single night we sat out there hoping to catch a beautiful sunset but didn’t have much luck until my last night there….and bam, how amazing is this????!!!??

At any rate my trip was great, very relaxing, spent with my amazing family and family friend…I seriously am so blessed to have a family that I enjoy hanging out with and that I actually have so much fun with!!! I love them.

August is almost over…I have no idea where it went but I am sooooo excited for Buckeye football.  I swear I will get better at blogging again, hopefully!!!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Things I’m loving this week…

Flights of beer…something about the display and the array of shades makes me really happy!

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Blueberry beer…I cannot remember for the life of me the actual name of this beer, but when I order “the beer that comes with actual blueberries in it” at World of Beer they know what I am talking about.  I love the taste and the presentation…notice the actual delicious blueberries at the bottom of my cup.

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This book and her blog/website: Kimberly Snyder 

Her book seems to be very well written and it seems like a plan that I really can agree with/follow/possibly succeed in.  I came across her name and her book several times with the last couple of days so I figured someone was trying to tell me something.  If you go on Amazon you can read the entire first chapter of this book, which totally sold me so check it out.  I can’t wait to learn all sorts of amazing things…hopefully!!!

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Pretty much IN LOVE with this polish and the combo.  Essie: Turquoise & Caicos with OPI: Bring on the Bling to complete my “party nail”  I don’t usually wear colors like this but I think i might start after seeing how much I love this one. 

 

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And speaking of nails I couldn’t resist purchasing these today…I am pretty sure I won’t use one on every single nail and I am also pretty positive I will not have the fake daggers during football season, or probably ever.  Either way..I am very excited to OSU football season already, but this makes me even more happy about the fall to come!!!!

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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

The Lake Part 2

So, it has been brought to my attention by a few people (my mom and the one and only Genius Meat himself) that that nickname sounds ridiculous…and after re-reading my previous post I guess I will agree with them.  I obviously enjoyed typing it WAY too much, and while I do laugh every time I use it I will refrain from calling the poor old fella that name on here…

I will call him by his name: Joe.

Tu-ta-loo Genius Meat…I will miss typing those words. 

Ok, but seriously back to what this post is really supposed to be about…the second part of our lake trip.

The Niagara Wine Trail 

I have been visiting this same area for most of my life and I feel very disappointed in myself that I am just now realizing this wine trail exists.  I found the website (see above) and talked my mom, Joe, Judy and Julie into joining me.  We mapped out 4 of the wineries on the trail and had a ton of fun.  The four women were wine lovers already but Joe was a wine virgin and I think he came away from the experience with a little bit better understanding of why I have such a relationship with wine.  Although I am pretty sure he will remain a faithful beer drinker, he  did realize that not all wines taste the same and he even purchased several bottles!!!

First on the trail was Schulze Vineyards & Winery which we all felt had the best tasting room.  It had a ton of really cute wine themed things you could buy, and the wine was pretty good too.

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Second was Black Willow Winery. They had a pretty nice tasting room as well and they offered chocolate during the tasting which is great because who doesn’t enjoy some nice chocolate with their wine?!!   The other cool thing is that they had three different Meads which were delicious.  I had never tried such a thing but it is some sort of honey drink…worst explanation ever, but whatever it was I liked it, HA!

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I guess I thought this was cool…

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Third on the trip was Chateau Niagara Winery. From the outside this place looked like it was an empty warehouse building, but the lady working was very knowledgeable and really sweet.

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Not sure if

A.)He didn’t like the taste of one of the wines

B.) He was getting tired of tasting wine and just wanted a cold beer or

C.)The wine was getting the best of him…

Either way I laugh at this picture every time.

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The fourth and final location for the group was Victorianbourg Wine Estate. It was a pretty cool place and had a wine that tasted like chocolate…which was super amazing and of course we purchased it!

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Although the group ended the trail with the last winery, my mom and I came across one last stop at the marina where my dad had to get gas for the boat.  I can’t remember what the name was because it was a little branch of the actual winery…but it was decent wine and anytime I drink wine with Sweet Sue I have a good time :)

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I would highly recommend taking a trip on the Niagara Wine Trail if you ever get up to that area.  If you don’t ever make it up there I would highly recommend finding local wineries near you and making your own trail. 

Wine tasting is so much fun, and can be pretty interesting if you actually listen and read about each wine.  If you are interested in learning more about different amazing wines check out a great and very informative blog Off the Beaten Vine…this guy knows his sh*t!!

I LOVE wine and I loved my trips to the lake!!!

All this talk about wine makes me want to go pour myself a glass…or two. CHEERS!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

The Lake part 1…

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Well hello everyone! I have been on vacation and that is the reason you have not heard much from me on here. 

My family has been going to upstate New York for most every summer for as long as I can remember.  We stay on a cute little island on Lake Ontario called Sunset Island that is just off the shores of Wilson, NY. To say that we love this place would be a complete understatement! 

At the lake you relax, go on the boat, read, drink, eat, play cards, play tennis, take naps and do whatever else you feel like doing.  It is super laid back and a great way to de-stress and recharge your life battery.  As kids we would run all over that island and used to have so much fun! 

My parents decided to head up there again this year and so I invited “genius meat” (this is what I will call the boy…he stated that he isn’t just a piece of meat, he is actually very smart…some might say genius even :)  and so the name genius meat was born and I couldn’t have thought of a better name for him on here, ha!)

At any rate, we headed up there on what might have been the HOTTEST day ever!!! The picture below is when we first arrived to my parents cottage…and we look like a HOT MESS!!!!! Notice the lovely “glow” of sweat all over us…miserable!!!!

July 2012 066 As I mentioned we have been going up there for years, and we even in fact, used to live up there for a short period when I was VERY young (like 2 years old) While we lived there my parents made several really great friends some of which had children.  Going back up there year after year we maintained contact with some of them and still remain friends.  Below is my mom and I with two of our favorite people from up there…Julie and Judy…it was SO great to see them!!!

July 2012 021 My prec mom enjoying her steamed clams…they actually weren’t that bad, waaayyyy better then seamed oysters for sure!!!

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 Genius Meat and I after dinner out at The Wilson House.

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 Below is the view of our cottage from the harbor.  It was a very cute little place to stay complete with a deck that overlooked the harbor and a dock to sit out on if we wanted to.  SO BEAUTIFUL!!!

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Mom and Genius Meat getting ready to dock the boat…now that’s efffing teamwork!!!

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 The amazing captain ;)

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Because the weather turned on us and became kinda chilly after that first hot day we could only go out on the boat a couple of times…and below is one of them. Genius Meat is looking pretty hot if I do say so myself…or maybe I just seriously enjoy using the term “Genius Meat” because I laugh out loud while I type it every. single. time.

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 Sweet Sue wanted in on the picture taking so she took a shot from the co-captain seat and captured us cheesing…errrr, i mean chilling,  in the back ground

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 Cute Genius Meat posing with a boat in the left hand picture below…you couldn’t really read what it said so I took another one of just the boat (which is on the right) all because his nickname is Red Dog and that was the name of the boat, so naturally I had to make him pose so I could take obnoxious pictures of him.

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And finally, they don’t call it Sunset Island for nothing…here we are getting ready to finish watching the sunset…it was really beautiful. 

July 2012 080 The entire trip was so relaxing and so much fun.  It was nice to get to spend quality time with my parents and for my parents to get to know Genius Meat a little better…they loved him obvious!  Stay tuned for part 2…we did a wine tour that ended up being pretty fun and tasty.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

My name is Abby and I changed my Facebook relationship status

The ever looming facebook relationship status…dun dun duuuunnnn! Every time I get on facebook and look at my profile and it says: Abby is SINGLE I feel like I could possibly be sending the wrong message to all of those men out there looking at my profile and thinking they can date me( i am totally saying this in a VERY sarcastic tone because I realize that last thing I said doesn’t really happen)

But seriously, I do kind of feel like I am not being truthful…either it shouldn’t say anything at all or I must do what needs to be done and change it to say: Abby is IN A RELATIONSHIP.  But, as if that isn’t already enough, you then have to decide if you are going to just leave it as that…you are in a relationship…and leave everyone guessing as to with whom…or do you make it known to the facebook world and call the poor guy out? AWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!?!?!?!

 I know I am quite possibly being super dramatic about this, or just a giant dork.  Either way, don’t get me wrong, I am over the moon excited about being in a relationship…

I would shout it off the rooftops and wear a shirt everyday telling people about it but there is just something weird to me about changing my status.  It’s like you are wanting a reaction from everyone by putting it out there

…and I just realized that by writing this post I am probably asking for an even bigger reaction…super awesome.

Changing my relationship status makes me feel a little bit like a 14 year old girl…in a good way and a bad way. Good because I am happy to have found such an amazing man that makes me VERY happy, and bad because…well, it just seems silly.

I am seriously thankful facebook wasn’t around when I actually was 14 though for real!!!  I am pretty sure I would have been one of those girls that was unnecessarily dramatic on there.

At any rate…I am officially (because changing it on facebook is the only way it becomes official) IN A RELATIONSHIP. And since I am already putting it out there I feel like I might as well let the world (and by world I mean my facebook friends) know exactly who the lucky fella is, right? 

Go big or go home…balls to the wall…there I go being dramatic again…whatever!

Can’t take it back now…nor do I want to.

And I am totally prepared for my friends and family to make fun of me for this post and for changing my relationship status. 

Bring. It. On.  (I guess)

And one last thing I want to share…just in case this post doesn’t already leave you wanting to make fun of me…

I bough my cats a toy and then took pictures of them playing with it.

And I will share those with you now:

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Squeeks getting ready to pounce.

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Nala taking a different approach…the pretend lazy then attack method, whatever entertains her I am ok with.

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And finally…the my two little balls of fun playing together.

That is all I have for today folks…let the comments begin :)

Monday, July 9, 2012

Ohio Blogger Meet and Greet other ramblings…

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Two years ago I became the proud (errr, VERY proud…hence the photo) owner of a Nike Sports Band. 

I fell in love with the thing. 

I have a love hate relationship with running but this band made it so much more enjoyable for me. 

It tells you how far you have gone, which helps for people like me who just start running without a specific course in mind.  My favorite thing about this handy dandy band is that it also tells me my pace.

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Now I realize to the innocent bystander my pace is pretty close to a brisk walk…but believe me, I am jogging.

Very slowly…but I am!

At any rate I like to know my pace because I have found that if I can keep myself at around the same pace of about 11:30-12:00 minute miles (not the 9:45 as it may appear above…don’t be fooled, that is just the time) I can run a heck of a lot longer and feel pretty darn good afterwards. 

When I don’t have the band I tend to run faster in random bursts of energy (if I am being honest, these bursts tend to happen when I am passing someone on the street and I don’t want to find myself awkwardly jogging next to them because their walk pace is the same as my jog pace,HA!)

So…the point is…I love the Nike Sports Band. 

The other point to this ramble is that I have not been using my band very much lately due to my obsession with all workout classes at Ohio Krav Maga check them out.  Due to this little obsession I sort of got out of straight up running…that is until the race bug bit me as it does every summer. 

I recently read a blog post over on  Daily Garnish about her honest experience with a half marathon and it made me want to re-tackle another race.  I have done several half marathons, one full marathon and many other 5ks here and there.  I personally feel like I have never trained correctly or ran enough miles during training to feel confident at the start of any of those races though. 

I really want to train and complete one half marathon and really feel like I was prepared: physically, mentally, nutritionally, etc. 

Don’t get me wrong…I loved every single race experience and didn’t feel completely unprepared for any of them.  I am very proud of myself for all of the races, but I am still missing something/

… and so I am currently shopping around to find my next race…possibly the The Columbus Marathon in October, not sure yet. 

So that is my ramble about running/racing/sports bands…anyone running in any races this October/November?

The other thing I need to tell you about (hence the blog post title) is the Ohio Blogger Meet and Greet I got to take part in this past weekend.  It was super amazing to meet other bloggers that live in Ohio.  I was actually kind of nervous going in because I wasn’t really sure what to expect…but everyone was really great. 

I came away from the experience feeling like I had made some new friends, excited to continue reading and following all of the blogs, and learning that not being on Twitter is like not having an email address.  I had no idea how much bloggers utilized twitter

…to the point I kind of felt a tiny bit embarrassed about how little i knew about it, until I went home and read up and played around with it.

Watch out Twitter, I’m coming for ya! 

Now you can follow me on twitter @abby22doodle

Thanks ladies for all being so sweet…I had a really amazing time meeting you, and I learned a few things too…like the importance of twitter, yay!!!

So to end this monster of a post I leave you with a photo from the meet and greet.  Check out all of the other blogs cause they are amazing women with interesting things to say!

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(Picture thanks to Leigh Anne!)

Left to right (back row): Michelle, myself, Brittany, Whitney, Shane, Caitlyn, Jen, Bethany, Lindsay

(front row): Leigh Anne, Katie, Holly

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Meet Paula…

She is my planner

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I carry her everywhere for the most part, and when I don’t have her with me I feel lost.  As ridiculous as this may sound…it is pretty much true. 

I love to plan things and have things going on in my life.  I also equally love writing them down…on paper, with fun colored pens/markers.  My friends often wonder and ask me why I haven’t entered the modern day world and keep my planner electronically in my phone.  They usually get annoyed with the non-electronic planner when they ask me if I am available to do something and I have no idea cause I left Paula at home.  The conversation (and birth of the name “Paula”) goes like this:

 

My friend Natalie: “We need to plan another bar crawl soon.”

Me: “Yes I agree”

Natalie: “Let’s look at a weekend in July and plan this.”

Me: “I don’t have my planner with me so we will have to wait until I get home and I can see what I have going on.”

Natalie: “Ukkk, why can’t you just bring your stupid planner with you everywhere or put stuff in your phone…it is like your planner is a real person, we should give it a name.  I name it Paula.”

Me: “Well my purse is too little to carry it everywhere and I don’t like electronic calendars.  Ok we will call her Paula.”

 

And so…Paula was officially born.  Now I understand it may be annoying to my friends that I don’t carry her everywhere, but there is just something I seriously love and can’t get away from when it comes to hand-writing in my planner. I need to see what is going on for the entire week and I need it to be color coded and I love writing fun things in Paula…my electronic calendar just doesn’t satisfy my planner needs. 

A typical week in Paula looks like this":

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She tells me when my friend’s birthdays are, when I don’t have to work, when my boyfriend does work (he is a firefighter with a different schedule than the average person)…she tells me when my workouts are, when I have meetings, when I get paid, when my roommate is out of town…she keeps track of it all. 

Maybe I am weird…I don’t know and I really don’t care. I was also one of those kids that got a little too excited to buy new school supplies, and I love office supply stores and catalogs.  Anyone else out there prefer a Paula type planner as opposed to an electronic one…anyone else equally love office supplies as me…I can’t possible be alone in this, right????

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Holiday in the middle of the week = what day is it again???

When a holiday falls in the middle of my work week it seriously throws me off…big time!  I have found myself over and over today thinking it was Sunday and then being all confused for a hot minute as to what day it actually is again.

At any rate, I hope you all had a wonderful 4th of July because I sure as heck did.  I am lucky enough (in my opinion) to live downtown which means I don’t have to go anywhere to watch Red, White and Boom and all of the festivities that come with it.  This year, despite what the online map said, the parade went right in front of my building so we got to watch and enjoy in the comfort of air conditioning (thru our window).  We also got to watch the fireworks from our buildings top level balcony…and it has an amazing view!

As with most holidays or themed anything’s we live for going all out.  Some might say we border on ridiculousness, I say we like to have a good time and dress for the occasion.  It seems that I have been blessed with a man in my life that will go along with this love for themes/holidays. Below are a few (three) photos of his…and mine…accessories and clothing that screams “We love America!”

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He is really getting into loving the outfit below…or maybe he is just trying to look goofy so I will stop taking his picture…

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Wrong buddy…I am always taking “one more picture” and I personally feel like the glasses make the outfit. On a side note: my aunt Mick collects themed sunglasses and showed up with at least 5 different pairs…I get my love of themes honestly, it runs in the family.

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The themes dessert…looked good and tasted good! ( There are even 50 blueberries on this bad boy…thanks Kelly)

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The beer selection and display our complex had set up and ready for all residents…we were happy.

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And finally, the group shot.  Last year we were basically the only ones that showed up to the resident cookout and party dressed for 4th of July.  Consequently we made the picture on the poster in all of the buildings that advertized for this years festivities. We felt pressure to “bring it” this year and I have a feeling we may be on next year’s poster as well. 

Few things to point out: My aunt Micks outfit…the headband was phenomenal.

Our tiny hats…also phenomenal.

Joe’s dog ears/America flags stuck into his sweat band…they even flowed in the wind when he walked.  I couldn’t stop laughing…what a trooper :)

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I hope you all had as much fun as we did because we had a pretty darn good time looking ridiculous in the name of celebrating America!  And to leave you with a quote cause that’s how I role:

I love my freedom

I love my America

~Jessi Lane Adams~