Thursday, June 30, 2011

Tomorrow my mother and I will set out to drive 591 miles to Madison, Wisconsin! That's a lot of miles for my little Honda Civic. I've been packing most of yesterday and today...trying to get ready for the trip. I'm sure I'll forget something or other at home, but I have faith in the U.S. Postal Service and my parents are making the trip up there in August to help me move into my actual apartment (I'll be living temporarily in a hotel for the first month.)

It is very strange that it is my last day at home :( :/ .. I have mixed feelings! I had some lunch with a couple High School friends today, which was nice..but it was sad saying goodbye.  I know that a new chapter in my life is about to begin, but I will definitely miss the comfort of being at home and of being with my mom, dad, and sister(s)!

I will most likely not be blogging too much once I start working 50 or so hours a week, but I'll see if I can find time. Now I have to pack up odds & ends to prepare to move to Wisconsin:

"The land of the angry badgers" (?)

By the way, I just looked up this Badger's name (naturally) and his name is Buckingham U. Badger...aka "Bucky Badger" ... I guess some things never change!

(Bucky the Bison)

Beach Break

Monday, June 27, 2011

My time away from blogging has been spent at the shore. My mom and I will be heading home tomorrow after a nice vacation and visit with my boyfriend's mom, sister, and aunt (we missed you, steve!) On the way back, we are stopping and visiting my long-lost sister who is a camp counselor this summer :) So, after a long day of driving tomorrow and 2 days of packing, we will be heading to Madison on Friday, since my first day of work is July 5th. It might be a while before I get back into the swing of blogging regularly, but I haven't forgotten about my loyal followers, just took a summer break :)

Wedding Season

Monday, June 20, 2011

I went to my cousin's wedding on Saturday, and it was a very nice reception and ceremony! All of my mom's brothers and sisters and my spouses came, and it was great to see so many relatives!

Here are where my aunts and uncles on my mom's side live: Kentucky, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Maryland..and then my fam's in Pennsylvania! So it was cool that people came so far to celebrate my cousin's wedding! (in KY)

One thing that was really cute - which I have never seen at any other weddings I've been too (and I've been to a whopping 3 that I can remember) - is that my cousin had personalized bobbleheads made as the wedding cake topper! Apparently, she found a website where she sent a picture of the couple in, and the website painted their faces on bobble heads and sent a very cute cake-topper to her! It really added a personalized touch to the wedding! Also, the special cake topper was a surprise for the groom...and the bobble heads really did look like my cousin and her new husband !! :)

I did take pictures of the wedding...but they are on my camera. So that would involve getting my camera, cord, loading the much work. ;) But I just wanted to write a short post before going to bed!

Happy Wedding Season to All! And I hope you enjoy any weddings you are invited to (or are involved directly in :)

The Joys of Packing

Friday, June 17, 2011

(Read The Joys of Unpacking for another positive post reflecting my impeccable tidiness)

Since I move to Madison in 2 weeks, I started packing yesterday. Here is what turned up when I attempted to organize/pack my socks:

6 Puma lone puma socks. This picture truly sums up my organizational skills.  

I plan on wearing the powder pink and baby blue socks with one another, in case I ever want to wear my Phi Beta Kappa honors society cord again. 

That's right, the honor cord for allegedly a selective honor society chose these beautiful pale colors to represent their prestigiousness. Don't they just scream: I'm going to a baby shower?? (specifically, where the sex of the baby is unknown and/or the mother-to-be is having a set of fraternal twins with opposing sexes?!) I'm constantly trying to master that look. Now my socks, that don't actually match, can match my honor cord. Why am I so fashionable?

The good news is, 2 other puma socks came out of the dryer this morning. The bad news was, one was purple and the other was green. I wish I was making this up. 

Sugar Sugar

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

This week, my mom has made dozens of cookies for my cousin's wedding this Saturday. Well, not specifically for the wedding - but for the little dinner at my Aunt's house on Friday for out-of-towners who are traveling to Cincy for the big day. She's made cranberry white chocolate, oatmeal raisin, and chocolate chip! Yum, yum, and yum. I think I've gained 5 pounds. But not actually. Because my body is totally used to it.

In Boston, I basically went on a three-day long eating spree. It was the best. 

 Best. Canolis. Ever.
 Best. Yogurt. Ever.
Prettiest. Gelatto. Ever.
(I'm sad to say I didn't consume any gelatto because I chose instead to gorge myself with two canolis. oops)

I also have pictures of my enchiladas and clam chowder...but stuck with the dessert theme. I found out some exciting news the other day via my mom. My boyfriend told me that I eat more ice cream than anyone he knows and my mom said that, actually, her father (my grandfather) eats ice cream every. single. night. (In my opinion, more things are hereditary than you might think. If you can inherit good or bad vision from your parents, why can't you inherit a sweet tooth!?)

And the good news?! My grandfather is currently 90 years old!! So I don't think I'm going to stop eating vast amounts of dessert any time soon. 


Sunday, June 12, 2011

I haven't been blogging lately because I went on an awesome road trip with two of my friends from college, Caitlin and Christine. It was a lot of fun, and Boston is officially my favorite northeastern city so far (beating out NYC and Philly easily!). I could probably post about Boston forever...and am thinking about doing it day-by-day...but today I will only have a couple Boston pics, because I decided on a simple post about one of my favorite parts of spring/summer: flowers!

 Alliums in Boston's Public Garden, so pretty! 
 There were lots of Roses in the garden as well.
I'm kind of obsessed with these flowers.
 This lily was blooming in my in my yard when I got home!
A close up of a rose my boyfriend got me for graduation!
The petals I put in a bowl after :)

I hope that everyone's week gets off to a good start! Don't forget to stop and smell the roses!

Summer Reading Gift

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Something weird happened to me the last time I was flying from Pittsburgh (to Atlanta) to Little Rock. And I don't mean when we sat at the gate after boarding the plane for 56 minutes, waiting for the catering cart, I almost expected that part.

No, the weird thing was, someone was nice to me. In the Atlanta airport. Like especially nice. Not just the usual "Excuse me ma'm, can you please get out of the way before I run you over with this beeping cart?"Although that happened too.

I was sitting at a new gate, and another passenger sat down beside me. Let me specify by saying that I had been sitting at another gate. I got there nice and early for my flight. Ever since my wonderful overnight stay in Detroit I always schedule ridiculously long lay-overs. So I was all settled in at my gate, sitting there for about 40 minutes when I decided to re-check my flight on the big screen.

And sure enough, my new gate was approximately 58 miles and a train ride away from my original gate. Oh, the joys of flying.

After a mini state of shock, I realized I had time and made it there. And then this other passenger sat down next to me. She was probably in her forties, and dressed professionally, with round glasses in her brown hair in a pony tail. I smiled at her and we bonded by discussing our journeys through the Atlanta airport (as she had been seated at the far-away gate originally too).

Then I found out that she was traveling from Pittsburgh to Atlanta to Little Rock too, so we discussed the Burgh - where she lived. (and now that I think about it, it's not surprising that she was nice considering her hometown ;) )

Then she pulled this book out of her bag:

I asked her about how the book was (as I had read a review for it in a People magazine). She said it was good, and that if she finished on the plane, she would give it to me. 

And, thanks to fact that we waited an hour for lightly salted peanuts, when we were just about to land in LR, she walked down the plane aisles, found me (even though I had a window seat) and gave me the book! I thought it was so nice of her. :) 

So anyway, I just finished the book yesterday! The ending was a little strange/left me a little confused. Other than that, I enjoyed it! It was an interesting non-conventional read (for example: she doesn't use any quotation marks for dialogue, so that was weird at first). Also, fantastical elements (the main character can taste the feelings of the cook in the food she eats) are intertwined with the normal. A good summer read though :)

World Vision

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Every Wednesday, my mom volunteers at an organization called World Vision. World Vision is a huge Christian-based charity that does many national and international programs. Among these are the Sponsor a Child program, the 30 hour famine (youth), disaster relief, and Gifts-in-Kind.

Gifts-in-Kind has two distribution centers in the country - one in Denver, and one in Sewickley (near Pittsburgh...about 30 minutes away from me!) My mom volunteers at this distribution center, where they receive TONS of corporate donations.

This year, they (sadly) sorted thousands of shirts that proclaimed "Pittsburgh Steelers: Superbowl Champions" [worth about $2 million] These are then sent to developing countries to people in need. But it's more than just losing sports teams (don't worry it's not just the Steelers, they receive regular donations from the NFL, NBA, NHL, and MLB), there are also major corporate donations. For instance, now at World Vision:
..there are pallets and pallets of donated clothing from Wal Mart. They also sort books, medical supplies, shoes, etc! 

Everything has to go from the above picture to this:

So that it can get properly distributed around the world :)

But my mom's group on Wednesday does my favorite: Knits for Kids, which is when people make handmade sweaters for children in need and then send them in. Guideposts, a Christian magazine, started this, but were overwhelmed by the vast amounts of donations they received, so now WV handles the donations. Here are some of the sweaters we unpacked, sorted, and re-packaged so they can be distributed to needy kids:

These are some of the cutest ones! (Obviously, not all are this nice.) But we receive so many...and quite a few are from Wisconsin. Which makes me think I might learn how knit to face the cold winters!