Wednesday, August 28, 2013

August Cara Box Reveal

August has flown by and I can't believe it is time to to reveal this month's Cara Box! I was matched with two great girls again, Jessie and Sarah. Jessie, who sent to me, is just a little ways south of me in Tuscaloosa! And just hearing she is from Tuscaloosa made me smile! Tuscaloosa is only an hour away from Mississippi University for Women (where I went to school). So my friends and I used to load up the car and drive that hour just to grab some krispee kreme donuts in the middle of the night. Good memories of that town!

Jessie sent me the best box for this month, the theme was Seasons of Life. She wanted to share some of her favorite things with me, including lavender and juniper berry glade expressions (I love lavender), bath & body products, trader joe's candies, lip balm, nail polish, and two woozies (which is a really cool insulated wine glass holder). I do love my wine people. 

I sent to Sarah who is from Kentucky! And thank goodness she is uber patient because I was so behind on getting it sent out, and she just got it today. I focused on her upcoming wedding by getting her fun little quiz books to do with her fiance and a 5 year one sentence journal (to document memories). I also focused on relaxation with bath bombs from Lush and one of my favorite face masks!

I really hope she enjoys it! And I can't wait till the next box swap! If you want to get involved, head over to wifessionals!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Notes from the Week + Sunday Social

I have already discussed most of the things that happened this week (i.e-MRI test, Failed Water Park Visit, and TB scare). But some other highlights include getting to sleep in a little bit on MRI day, and then having breakfast with Adam at Cracker Barrel! Where I got a Stewart's Orange'n Cream drink! One of my all time favorite beverges! I finished the book He's Gone by Deb Caletti in a few short days. That book had me riveted from page one, and when I wasn't reading it, I was thinking about how much I wished I was reading it!

This weekend has been pretty uneventful, since I put myself on bed rest to get over this sciatica! But the problem is the medicines I am on are masking my pain, which makes me want to get out of the house and take on the world. But nooooooooo, I can't. Thank goodness for Big Brother Live Feeds! I have also watched Wreck it Ralph with Adam, and we played a little Mario Party to kill the time. And I want to give a shout out to Adam for waiting on me all day without complaint and listening to all my complaining and whining about being bored. Oh, and I registered for the Neon Vibe 5k in October, just because I'm willing my sciatica to be gone by then, so I can get back to walking and jogging! I've felt a little like a bump on the log for weeks now. This race involves neon colors and black lights. How can I not do it?

1. What do you miss most about being a kid?
I think the simplicity of being kid due to the lack of grown up worries. Children don't have to worry about bills, getting dinner on the table, budgets, and working a 9-5. 

2. Did you have a nickname growing up?  
I didn't really have nicknames growing up. My mother called me care bear or bear for short. I didn't get my main nicknames until I went to college. 
3. What was your favorite thing to do at recess?
I went to a small catholic school for a time in elementary school. Our recess was spent in a parking lot. If the parking lot was empty, we would play soccer. If there was a funeral that day or a mass, we would mostly just play hide and seek with the cars.
4. What did you want to be when you grew up?
When I was really young, I really wanted to work with  animals. But I decided at age 14, that I wanted to be a therapist. I am really proud of myself for accomplishing that dream!

5. Did you participate in any school activities?
My main activity was Army ROTC. I picked ROTC as an elective so I couldn't get out of PE. But funny enough, I ended up having to work out so much harder in ROTC than I would have if I had stayed in gym. But I loved ROTC! I was color guard commander for a time, and we did activities that involved climbing rock walls and riding in helicopters! I wouldn't trade that experience for anything.  Even if I did have to wear my "pickle suit" every Wednesday.

6. What is the funniest thing you did as a kid that your parents still remind you about?
One time when I was at church with my family, somebody was making announcements over the loud speaker. When I heard this, I turned around, shushed everyone, and declared, "God is Speaking."

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Of Sciatica, The Outbreak Monkey, & The Bitter Smell of Defeat (a.k.a. Sunscreen)

This has kind of been a rough summer I gotta say, and I'm pretty sure I've said that before. I worked my butt off in Summer Day Treatment this year, I was soooo concentrated on making sure the kids had fun, that I was too worn out to have much fun myself, except for the Friday afternoons I spent at Point Mallard, floating in the lazy river! Those were glorious, and my way of reclaiming my summer!

And not only has it been a hectic summer, it has been kind of a rough week. I'm still suffering something awful with sciatica, which should have been healed ages ago. So I finally went to my doctor, who really chided me for not resting my leg this summer. I shouldn't have been lifting anything, much less coolers and buckets full of balls (That sounds so dirty!).  So she made me get my first ever MRI today, just to make sure nothing worse is going on there, and she told me to take it easy for real this time. And I will because I'm so tired of being in chronic pain.

And I don't know if y'all remember this, but last year I had a reaction to the tuberculosis (TB) test I took for work, and I had to go get a cat scan to clear me. So this year, I had to get another TB test for work, and I have had a reaction to it AGAIN, so I have to jump through all those hoops again! I'm not concerned about it, the nurse at work says most likely I'm allergic to the TB test, and I'm never allowed to have the test again. But really it is just all a pain. 

On a lighter note, my coworkers were teasing me that my arm was going to fall off due to my allergic reaction, and I was just giving it back to them saying, "My arm might not fall off, but I'm sorry if I infect everyone." My boss said she was going to need a lot more than an apology if I gave her TB. Then, our receptionist said, "Don't you know it's national hug your boss day, Brittany?". Ha! I should have gone in for the hug!

But I am feeling a little bit like the little monkey in the movie Outbreak today.

So due to all this stress, I wanted to get in one more lazy river day before the park closes for fall. Since the kids are back in school, it is only open on weekends. And yes, swimming is good for sciatica! I feel amazing afterwards. So once I finished work, I changed clothes, and put on my sunscreen, and headed out to meet my mom (who was coming with me). And by headed out, I mean slid out of my work building undetected ala mission impossible.  Because even off the clock, there is something odd about prancing around the office in your swimsuit, even if you are wearing a cover up.

I was so excited. It was the perfect day for the pool, it was sunny and hot, hot, hot. I took a picture for instagram with the caption, "Going to spend the day, soaking up the last vestiges of summer." Then, I spent five minutes pondering if vestiges was even a word, it started to sound made up in my head. But I googled it, and was in the clear. But then, I was worried vestiges made me sound like a snobby smarty pants (I worry too much). Ultimately, I just decided to roll with it. LOL

I had it in my head that the park would be pretty empty due to it being a school day. So when I pulled into the park, and I saw no one I excitedly exclaimed to my mom, "There's like nobody here!" The minute it rolled off my tongue, I realized, "Oh, there is nobody here". As in it isn't open.  Oh, the disappointment I felt in that moment, watching the empty intertubes float round and round on that chlorine filled water. It was right in front of my face, but I couldn't get to it! There was some employees meandering around, and I breifly thought of taking over the water park National Lampoon Style. But I doubt I could avoid the jail sentence like Clark Griswald did. 

After I got home, the smell of the sunscreen on my skin reminded me of the defeat of the day. But my disappointment was tempered when I found Disney's The Hunchback of Notre Dame on the TV, which was a total score. Love that movie (but then I looked up the plot of Victor Hugo's original book, what a downer! I'll stick with Disney).

It's just sad to know my water park days are behind me until next summer! I just want to beg the summer not to go!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

A Spirted Date Night

Last weekend, when we got back from the beach, we attended an Open Studio painting class. The difference in Open Studio as opposed to the other classes I've taken, is you get to pick any painting you want. And while you get help from the teachers, you kind of get to take it into your own hands. 

I decided to do a painting of Big Spring Park located here in Huntsville (I love that place, I even blogged about it here). And Adam decided to paint a stadium representing The Green Bay Packers!  I loved that we each picked a painting that represents where we come from, and reminds me how tied we are to our hometowns!

I am very proud of my painting, it is one of my favorites, not only because it represents one of my favorite places, but because I was able to do it without asking for much help. I have learned so much in the last few months I've been painting there. I was just able to size up the painting, and decide which steps to take. My color mixing skills have even improved. I can't wait to keep painting and learning more. Painting has become my therapy!

Now, Adam he, sadly, is never satified with his work. He thought his was awful, even though I loved it. There was just no telling him otherwise. Oh well, you can't win them all. He even hated this dyptich we did together a few weeks ago. 

But I think it is awesome, and my opinion of it is the only one that matters anyway. So take that, Adam. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

A Beachy Weekend

It's Sunday night, and we are fresh off our little vacation to Orange Beach, Alabama. It was my, "I survived Summer Day Treatment, so give me a vacation, trip". And also the, "I'm going to convert Adam to the wonders of beach vacations, trip." Since he has never been one for beach vacations. Maybe it's because he is from Wisconsin and beaches aren't so abundant there?

Anyway, we left on Thursday, and we got to the shore in the afternoon. And luckily it was sunny, so we changed into our swimsuits, and spent the next few hours alternating between the pool and hot tub. And drinking frozen daiquiris (poolside is the best way, if you ask me).  For dinner, we grabbed some great seafood, and then went to do one of our favorite activities, mini golf. I loved the place we went, Adventure Island. Its course had waterfalls and a volcano.  I am historically not very good at putt putt, and Adam usually kicks my butt. But that night, I was on a roll. And I actually got my first hole-in-one in the history of ever (cross that off my bucket list)!! Adam did beat me, but only by about two points. I blew it so bad, on the 18th hole.

Unfortunately, that day was the only sunny day we had on the whole trip. The next day was cloudy but not cold, so we headed down to the beach. And I have to say I love beach days more when it is sunny and hot, but we still had fun. The water was crazy calm though, hardly any waves. So we kept bumping into fish, which kind of freaked me out at times, I'm such a wimp! But the fish just always took me by surprise!

The day after that was non-stop storms. So no beach, or pool, or hot tub. Which was the whole point of the trip!! I'll be honest I was somewhat disappointed. But at least we had some time just to hang out in the hotel room and read and eat good food, and all in all the trip was seriously relaxing. Which was just what we needed.

Next time, I just won't plan a trip when a tropical storm is brewing! Darn, mother nature.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Notes from the Week + Sunday Social

This week was super hectic, it was the last week of summer day treatment, so we had graduation and water day (think water gun and balloon fights). And all the kids wanted to soak the staff, meaning me. But I got to get them too, spraying them with the water hose, announcing stuff like, "This is for whining about football every single day....". I celebrated being done with summer day treatment by spending another Friday afternoon in the lazy river. I feel like I just can't get enough of that lazy river. It is my happy place.

On a not so happy note, I am so behind on my paperwork at work, like on the verge of a panic attack, behind. But I'm hopeful I will get it all done. I will get it all done before I leave for the beach Thrusday right? Right? Bueller? Bueller?  Anyone? Anyone?

Late Saturday night, I went to the airport to pick up the hubs from his business trip. I was so happy to have him with me again, and he is uber happy to be home. And this morning, we slept in together and then went to IHOP for breakfast. Our service was awful! Somehow they forgot to take our ticket to the kitchen, and we waited forever. At least it gave us plenty of time to catch up with each other! 

1. When you were little what did you want to be when you grew up? 
I once told my dad that I wanted to grow up a be a vegetarian! But what I really meant was that I wanted to be a veterinarian or a zookeeper!

2. What was your favorite way to kill time as a kid?
I used to love to roller skate, play with my friend Amanda, watch TV, and read. I always loved reading, even back then.
3. When did you get your first cell phone?
I think I was about 15. I do remember that I was one of the first people in my group of friends to have one, so I thought I was hot to trot. I also ran up huge phone bills, and I was constantly getting myself in trouble because of that phone.

4. What is your favorite magazine to read?
I love magazines, but I don't sit down to read them a whole heck of a lot. But I do on occasionally read Psychology Today and the Psychotherapy Networker. Gosh, I'm such a Psych Nerd. 

5. What is the one random object people would be surprised to find in your purse? 
I really don't think I have anything odd in my purse. My purse is mostly where pens and receipts go to die. 

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Notes & Reflections on My Week Home Alone:

I'm a Scardy Cat
Maybe it is because I never lived alone (I went straight from my mom's, to dorm life, to the ball & chain), or it is because I watch dateline, forensic files, and all those other True Crime shows like it is my job, but I'm such a scardy cat at night.  Every sound makes me think that someone is going to break in and murder me. When the air conditioner kicks on, it sounds like the mafia have finally uncovered my hiding place or a herd of elephants are breaking in with the intention of trampling me. How come I never noticed that before? But I've finally been able to sleep by drowning out the noise with my two large fans, and leaving on the lamp in the living room.

My Mom & Husband are also Scardy Cats
So you know what happens when you are alone, and you have accidentally left your phone on silent and you get so caught up in what you are doing that you don't see how late it is getting? Your mom shows up at your door, scares you to death by attempting to just barge in without knocking, in her nightgown to check on you. Why you must ask? Adam called her to check on me, because he was concerned something had happened to me since I wasn't answering my phone. If the shoe was on the other foot, I would just assume that person fell asleep...Did I mention my stepfather was in the car with his gun and they brought the dog? They think I'm going to get myself in trouble too!

I'm Eating Awful
There is something about Adam being out of town that is making me want to eat like a college frat boy. Pizza and cheeseburgers all week long. Which is odd because Adam is so picky that it is not like I cook meals for him anyway. But I'm much more likely to come home and eat dinner here, if I know he is at home waiting for me. 

I'm a Life Saver
Today when I was driving home, I turned on a little access road  by our apartment, and I almost ran over a little turtle. I am slightly scared of turtles.  Once when I took my dog to the vet, there was injured turtle with a pool ball for a leg, that kept following me around, which made me seriously worried for my toes. And I always assume that all turtles are snapping turtles.  But I was seriously worried for this little guy's life, so I had to help it. Luckily, he didn't bite me. And I just sort of scooted him back off in the grass. Usually I would make Adam accomplish such tasks. But heck, I don't need him, I'm she woman hear me roar!!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Notes from The Week + Sunday Social

How was your week guys? I feel like mine flew by in one big blur. Monday, I did trivia night with Adam as Team BlueShell (we ended up 1 point from 3rd place!), and Thursday I played with my mother as Team Two Generations of Awesome (we sucked terribly).  This week in summer day treatment, I survived taking my kiddos to Chuck E. Cheese, did about a million and one pieces of paperwork, and survived some majorly bad attitudes from my classroom helpers. 

On Friday, I spent hours in the wave pool and lazy river at Point Mallard. I even managed to get a little bit of a sunburn and a case of serious lazy river burn on my knees. I guess that is the medical hazard of ultimate relaxation A.K.A nirvana achieved.  Saturday, Adam and I went to my favorite Huntsville restaurant Cheddars for some Southern Fried Catfish, red beans and rice, and broccoli & cheese casserole. I spent the evening painting KLIMT's The Kiss at Spirited Art (yes, painting is my new obsession, it may never stop).

This morning I woke up at 4 a.m. to send Adam on a business trip to California. He wants me to tell everyone that because he thinks it makes him sound uber important. I'm going to miss him terribly, but I think I might be too busy to notice, being that it is the last week of our work summer  treatment program, and I need to have all my work complete this week, so that I can head off to the beach the next week!! The beach is calling my name! Can't you hear it?

Now it's on to this week's Sunday Social:

1. What are 3 items you can’t live without on a daily basis (water, food, shelter, and clothes don’t count)? I can't live without my kindle for emergency reading situations, my scentsy scents because good smells relax me and make me happy,  and Pandora radio so I can listen to music while I'm working or doing anything else.

2. What is your all time favorite book? This is a hard question to answer because there is so many books I love, but I would have to say A Million Miles in a Thousand Years by Don Miller. It is such an inspiring book, and sometimes I just reread my favorite quotes to get uplifted when I'm feeling down. 

3. What is something you’d like to accomplish before the end of 2013? 1. Save up half of the money needed for our down payment to buy a house next year, 2. Attend a Green Bay Packer's Game with my Husband, and 3. Add a pet to our family

4. If you could go back and relive any year of your life which year would it be? I think 2008 was one of my favorite and best years. I graduated from college, I got engaged to Adam, I moved in with Adam in California, and I got to go on a trip of a lifetime to Israel! I think that would be a fun year to do over.

5. What do you wish people knew about you without you having to tell them? That I am very shy and feel very socially awkward most days, although I hide it well. And that I need a lot of positive feedback and reinforcement just to know that I'm doing OK, and that one negative word sticks with me forever. I'm working on all these issues, it is a non-stop learning process.