Tuesday, September 30, 2008

"I cannot go to school today," said little Peggy Ann McKay,
I have the measles and the mumps,
A gash, a rash and purple bumps.
My mouth is wet, my throat is dry,
I'm going blind in my right eye.
Shel Silverstein, "Sick"

This poem is the very first thing that popped in my head last night as I felt the ache in my eye.

I'm going blind in my right eye

But really, I'm getting a stye - ew! See I even rhymed like a poet.

Now, it is red and swollen and my lid feels heavy on my eye when I blink. Nick joked that I was going to look like Matthew Broderick in Election. Ugh!

Then we started laughing and my eye hurt more. Stupid stye.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Silent gratitude isn't much use to anyone.
G.B. Stern

Sunday gratitude:
  • Great new post on Meghan McCain's blog with pictures of the presidential debate. Whatever side you're on, these photos are interesting behind the scene shots.
  • Watching movies on TV that you forgot who much you liked such as Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind on E! last night.
  • So much DIY wedding stuff done! Program and map baskets, reserved seating cards, guest book sign, gift tags, etc.
  • Free beauty product samples - I thoroughly enjoyed my mud mask last night in my PJs.
  • My Bath and Body Works spiced pumpkin "wall flower" - even though it is 90 degrees outside it smells like fall in my condo!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

The quickest way to know a woman is to go shopping with her.
Marcelene Cox

I ventured out today for car wash, errands and shopping. I was really looking for somthing to wear for our engagement photos (getting them taken a week before the wedding - oh well!) and for our "getaway" when we leave the wedding reception.

I didn't have much luck on something new and repeated my old habit of buying new versions of items I already have. I guess if it fits well, I wear it often and feel good in it it works. But I had to laugh at what I brought home.

Found the Calvin Klein dress I wore to Nick's brother's wedding (and LOVE) in red and on clearance at TJMaxx for $20 (originally $180). I now have the exact same dress in black and red.

I wear these basic black, heeled sandals at work, with skirts and jeans all the time. I think I'm on my fifth pair of the exact same shoe but I literally wear them out.

And finally, my slight obsession (okay, rut) with stretch black tee shirts (not 100% cotton, they have to have a little spandex to fit well). My Target versions are worn out (and they don't carry them anymore) so I was delighted to find them for $6 at the Banana Republic outlet.

Friday, September 26, 2008

"Be yourself" is about the worst advice you can give some people.
Tom Masson

I've been tagged by Lucy to list seven weird or random facts about myself:

1. I have very specific pen requirements at work and tend to hoard the ones I love: Sharpie fine tips, Pilot Precise Grip in fine tips and Pilot Dr. Grip Gels. I will only write in black ink.

2. I have an intense fear of frogs. It all started when childhood friend, Clayton, put one down the front of my bathing suit when I was seven. I would never squish or hurt one but I just cannot stand being around them. Ew. Ew. Ew. Rodents on the other hand, don't bother me a bit.

3. I can't type documents, letters or anything in Times New Roman font. I hate it. Lucinda Sans in 10 point font or Garamond in 12 point, please.

4. In general, I hate seafood. I will only eat spicy tuna rolls at a sushi place and I can stand tuna salad if necessary. I won't touch anything else. Growing up in Florida most people are amazed but no fresh grouper, shrimp, lobster or anything for this girl. Gag.

5. My mother has a very green thumb and Nick loves to garden too. I kill floral arrangements. Too bad, as much as I love plants at home Bella usually gnaws the life out of them even before I get to forget to water them. Oh well!

6. I love mail. Sending it and receiving it. Mail is one of my favorite things. Nothing looks nicer than a handwritten address with a crisp stamp. I subscribe to catalogs just to get them in the mail (even though I know I can look at their websites). Thick pink and blue greeting card envelopes are divine as are glossy new magazines at the beginning of the month. I'll even get excited about coupon packs... if they come in the mail!

7. I use antibacterial gel like its my job. I carry a small bottle in my bag and have a pump bottle on my desk that I use randomly throughout the day. I also take Airborne daily. I may be weird about it but I haven't had a cold in YEARS.

I tag... anyone who wants to post this too!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

writ-er's cramp: n. a cramp or spasm of the muscles of the fingers, hand and forearm during writing
Merriam-Webster Dictionary

What I thought would be an evening long project, my mom and I whipped through the wedding invitation addressing, stamping, stuffing and sealing in less than 2 hours this past weekend.

However, I will say that my wrist was still hurting by Tuesday from all of the writing!

They went out on Monday and already are being delivered to our guests. Very exciting that it is all coming together!

Invitation central in my mom's kitchen

Main invitation

Whole package with invite, RSVP card, RSVP envelope and main envelope

Sample addressing

Ready to go with the prettiest sunflower stamps around!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.
C.S. Lewis

Now that summer is officially over, I wanted to take a moment and review my summer reads (I search blogs for great book recommendations so I try to post mine often).

Since my last book post I've finished two more books:

Sweetwater Creek by Anne Rivers Siddons
So well written it makes me want to raise Boykin spaniels in the South Carolina low country. Rivers Siddons is a Tri Delta so I've always heard of her work and seen her name pop up from time to time with alumnae stuff but this is the first book of hers I have read. I really loved it and am looking forward to reading her other titles.

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
This was a recommendation from another book lover and probably my least favorite of this summer's books. It was a quick read that made me laugh outloud and I liked the frequent pop culture references (it was set in 1992) but it wasn't as wonderful as I thought it would be.

Any other books you read this summer that you'd like to pass along?

Monday, September 22, 2008

If you surveyed a hundred typical middle-aged Americans, I bet you'd find that only two of them could tell you their blood types, but every last one of them would know the theme song from The Beverly Hillbillies.
Dave Barry

I hope you all had time last night to watch The Emmys because it was so fun! I love the Academy Awards and all but there are so many movies I have never seen or heard of... but television, as my mother always says, is something of which I watch too much.

So it is great to see all of the shows, actors and music I actually know!

The highlight of the show for me was Josh Groban's montage of television theme songs (hey, I do actually have that playlist on my iPod). He was so wonderful and I never realize how talented he was with voices and all music genres.

Also of note:

  • Random TV actors talking about politics got old after about the third mention during a speech or introduction - okay we get it, you're all voting for Obama.

  • Lauren Conrad from The Hills looked lovely (although really, really tan).

  • Stephen Colbert will always be my favorite (and maybe just for the reason that he reminds me of my Nick).

  • I also loved seeing Tina Fey win her first Emmy. And for not mentioning Sarah Palin.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Silent gratitude isn't much use to anyone.
G.B. Stern

Sunday gratitude:
  • Sliced cantelope and honeydew
  • Small movie theater popcorns and a Diet Coke - doesn't seem so bad
  • My beautiful wedding invitations addressed, stamped, assembled and ready to go in the mail
  • Stacks of old magazines ready to browse
  • Nick's funny photo text messages with sound effects

Saturday, September 20, 2008

A man who is very busy seldom changes his opinions.

Friedrich Nietzsche

This weekend I'm headed home to my mom again for wedding marathon:

  • Second meeting with photographer to review some questions and timelines.
  • Buy all the stamps for the invitations.
  • Stop by jeweler to get our wedding bands engraved and have my grandmother's band resized for me to wear too.
  • Address and stuff ALL of my invitations - they're going out this week!
  • Meeting with valet for the reception
  • Purchase guest book

And then we'll of course fit in lunch and hopefully see The Women. Busy, busy but fun, fun!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Pure love produces pure nonsense.
Jonathan Klinger

My soon-to-be husband (borrowed from The Preppy Lizard):

He's sitting in front of the tv, what is on the screen?
Every and any sport, including shows that are about sports or shows about people who play sports.

You're out to eat; what kind of dressing does he get on his salad?

What is one food he doesn't like?
He won't eat squash or sweet potatoes (neither will his father, that is where he picked it up from as a child).

You go out to the bar. What does he order?
Just a beer.

Where did he go to high school?
A small Catholic high school in the middle of the corn fields of Iowa

What size shoe does he wear?

If he was to collect anything, what would it be?

What is his favorite type of sandwich?
White bread, lots of ham and cheese.

What is his favorite cereal?
Any and every kind, he has three or four open at a time. Right now he is at a Wheaties kick.

What would he never wear?
Madris pants. Madris shorts, yes. Pants, no way.

What is his favorite sports team?
Nebraska Huskers football or Atlanta Braves

Who will he vote for?
McCain, but he liked Romney best.

Who is his best friend?
Chad, his childhood friend and who will be his best man in the wedding.

What is something you do that he wishes you wouldn't do?
I probably cry too much for my own good. It is just how I express my feelings, even when it is for a silly reason.

How many states has he lived in?
Three - Iowa, Florida and Illinois

What is his heritage?

You bake him a cake for his birthday; what kind of cake?
He'll eat any cake as long as there is a scoop of ice cream on the plate too!

What could he spend hours doing?
Playing golf, eating and naping.

Good thing he's cute!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

The only way not to think about money
is to have a great deal of it.
Edith Wharton

Dear Fidelity,

I would like you to please give me my Roth IRA money back, including all of the money that is NO LONGER THERE. I prefer my little, simple Emigrant Direct savings account where my money doesn't go away and I actually make money, although not much, on interest. The little red arrow pointing down showing how much I have lost in ONE DAY makes me whimper.

Bella expressed her concern as well.

Those finance guys said, "Oh, Randall you should invest more in the market. You should save for retirement." Now they all have pictures on CNN of their hands covering their eyes. Pictures of grown men crying.

Now I may not have a lot of money but I worked hard and saved for it. I don't like seeing that it is NO LONGER THERE.

So please give it back.


PS: John Hancock, that goes for you and my 401(k) as well. Thank you.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.
George Eliot

I participated in the Fall Swap and had such a fun time putting together goodies for my swap partner, Amy.

Her package arrived this week much to my delight and certainly was a wonderful way to get into the fall spirit! Thanks Amy!

My goodies included:

  • A spiced scented Wall Flower from Bath & Body Works - I've always toyed with buying one of these but never did, I love it already!
  • Darling fall scrapbook goodies
  • Yummy caramel candy corn
  • Sparkly "R" for decoration
  • Lots of loose fall leaves I've already placed in a vase for decoration (and Bella has stolen a few and hid them around the house!)
  • Cute tabletop halloween accessory and fall wall hanging
  • Crafty cards that become magnet frames for the recepient
  • A handmade notebook with red gingham (my favorite!) - I've already started using it with my wedding planning binder to take notes and such

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Celebrate the happiness that friends are always giving, make every day a holiday and celebrate just living!
Amanda Bradley

I had such a wonderful time at my bachelorette party! It was so great to spend the day and evening with a group of some of my favorite people. Really, all of my close friends, minus Ashley who lives in Las Vegas, were there.

We headed over the the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino on Saturday morning, had lunch and enjoyed the afternoon at the pool. Then went out to dinner and found this great place with a live band... and then danced all night. Plenty of memories and a fabulous time!

Five girls, one overnight trip and a VW full of stuff!

Ready to go to the pool!

View of the hotel from lunch

Beautiful pool, they even had a water slide!

Just in case anyone forgot which chair was mine!

Nick's sister, Leah, made delicious pink cupcakes!

With my hostess and party organizer, Melissa

Casey, my matron of honor, and her really long skinny legs!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate.
Oprah Winfrey

I'm heading over to a resort on the east coast for the day and night to celebrate my bachelorette party with seven of my nearest and dearest. So excited for the trip and to spend time with a fabulous group of ladies!

Here's to a fun time and memories made!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

When we blindly adopt a religion, a political system, a literary dogma, we become automatons. We cease to grow.
Anais Nin

I really do think politics are interesting, both sides in fact. While I may not agree with everything said I enjoy listening to what people believe in and what they find important.

I'd be happy to talk with someone whose issues don't align with mine if they can back up their points and understand what they are standing up for.

But the one thing that really drives me crazy are people that just spout off whatever nonsense they think they should go along with and not get a single aspect of what they are protesting or fighting for.

I saw this clip on FOX news and just had to share. It is the perfect example of why so many people should just shut their mouths and have a seat.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

A happy marriage is a new beginning of life,
a new starting point for happiness and usefulness.
Dean Stanley

I had a lovely trip to St. Louis and then drove up to Iowa for Nick's brother's wedding this past weekend. I had five whole days with my Nick which was a treat!

My camera died by the end of the rehearsal dinner but I was able to use Nick's sister's camera and some old school Kodak disposables from Walgreen's - I love pictures, so I was willing to look like a dork winding my camera for the next shot!

Here are some cute ones from my camera before the battery died and from Leah's camera too.

Groomsmen and bride's father getting their suits fitted - they didn't all wear blue on purpose!

At the rehearsal - the wedding was at the Catholic church on the campus of the University of Northern Iowa (where they are both alums)

And Nick isn't paying attention to the priest...

Lovely bride and groom, Matt and Sarah, at the rehearsal dinner at Nick's parent's house

Nick with his Uncle Tom and second cousin, Cameron

Me and Nick

Fireworks in the backyard courtsey of Nick's dad and his Uncle Tom

Fireworks (and a lot of smoke!)

The weather the morning of the wedding was cool and sunny - this is a view of Nick's parent's backyard

University of Northern Iowa campus

Flowers arrived at the church

The lovely bride getting ready

Nick and his sister Leah, also in the wedding party

Matt and Sarah during the ceremony


Ready for the reception!

Guest book table at the reception

Bridesmaids at dinner

Groomsmen at dinner

We're next!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Reunited and it feels so good, Reunited 'cause we understood
There's one perfect fit and, sugar, this one is it
We both are so excited 'Cause we're reunited
Peaches and Herb

I'm checking in from Nick's couch in St. Louis! I have the pleasure of spending a few days with him here, his sister is flying in and then we're all headed to Iowa for his brother's wedding (we're in wedding overload in this family!).

I'll have plenty of photos to share soon but in the meantime I'm going to go enjoy my hunny!
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