The Fabulous Life of Jules was having a free-for-all of the Happy Award so I thought since I have nothing notable to write about today I would snag it up for a prompt. Thanks Jules for giving me something to write about!
The Rules for the Happy 101 Award I will list ten (10) things that make me happy and try to do at least one of those things today! Then I am going to list ten (10) bloggers that brighten my day. Then those people are supposed to pass it on. Easy! Fun! Let’s get started!
Ten (10) Things That Make Me Happy
1. Freshly washed sheets on my bed. I love the clean feel and the fresh smell of fabric softener. Clean laundry is probably one of my favorite smells ever!
2. Reading a really good book that I just can't tear myself away from. I haven't had one of those in awhile so I'm certainly taking recommendations!
3. Cooking and Baking (when I have the time - not usually on nights I'm rushed from work). I love to try new recipes and have people test my creations.
4. Pink stuff. I know that sounds silly but my mood level just elevates when I'm surrounded by lots of girly, frilly pink things. Yesterday while at Target Ben and I were perusing the Valentines decorations and I squealed every time we passed an end cap full of pink goodies. PS - GO TO TARGET for your Valentines Decor! So cute!!!
5. Back rubs. I trade household chores with Ben to get them. Fabulous.
6. Cosmetics. I love cosmetics and bath things. Unfortunately this happens to be one area that I consider myself a snob in. While I will shop at drug stores for a few items I fully believe in the quality of dept. store brands. My personal faves? Glad you asked: Smashbox, Clarins (their skin care is to die for) MAC, and Lorac. I've also been known to dapple in Stila (lip glazes) Nars (blush) Vincent Longo (lip vinyl), and Dior (Tinted Moisturizers)
7. Date days and nights with Bennyboo. While I can fully appreciate a day spent at home I'm more an out on the town kind of girl. Doesn't have to be fancy - breakfast and a matinee is fine by me!
8. Sushi. I don't get it very often but I love it. Same goes with Indian food, Japanese food and pretty much any type of food that's not fully Americanized. None of these places are very close to my home/work and Ben doesn't like them very well so I usually only get to eat there when I have a date with my mom!
9. Candles. I love candles and as I've mentioned before, Yankee has my heart. Take not gals Semi Annual Sale happening now! Also happening at Vicky C's, Bath and Body Works and White Barn Candle Co.
10. Ice Cream: I like ice cream better in the winter than in the summer- wierd quirk of mine huh? All time favorite Homemade Brands Cookies n Cream, followed by Choc, chip cookie dough, and Graters Black Rasberry Chip!
Ok gals- I'm going to put myself to the challenge today - not only am I going to try to do one of these things today - I'm going to go for all of them!
Feel free to grab this award if you want to - I'm off to make some happy!
The year started off well. I was a sophomore in high school on top of my game, involved in EVERYTHING - at least so I thought - got involved in some pretty dangerous activities (as most 15 years olds do once or twice). For the first time I started dying my hair platinum blonde. Started dating a boy who made my heart dance in little circles inside my chest and just when I was pulling my head out of my own ass- was informed that my family's financials were crap and that we were moving to Tennessee to stay with family for awhile. In October of 2000 as a junior in high school we moved three states away and I WAS MISERABLE. I had my worst hair mishap ever and had to dye it back to dark. This would be the last short cut I would ever have and would begin wearing my hair longer and longer every year!
The (back) of the house we moved to in Tenn.
Sweet 16th birthday!
2001: The beginning of 2001 saw my mom and I move back to Ohio and to my mom's home town, where I began attending my 3rd highschool in just a matter of months. I started out sad and miserable but the year definitely began to turn its self around as I made new friends many of whom I still consider very good friends one who is going to be a bridesmaid in my wedding, got involved in lots of activities and was close enough to reconnect with the boy who captured my heart in 2000. We began dating in the summer of 2001 and I couldn't have been happier. In 2001 I also had starring roles in two high school plays and completely fell in love with acting.
2002: I got my first nursing home job in dietary and my interest became completely sparked in gerontology though it was not to become a serious prospect in my career for many moons. I added gerontology as a thematic sequence and took several course in it in college. I graduated high school with thespian honors and a vocal scholarship. The first of many very serious complications and arguments began to develop in my relationship with boy. We broke up, made up, yelled, screamed, and cried on a weekly basis. This was to go on for quite some time yet. In late summer 2002 I began as a freshman at Miami University and lived away from home for the first time. I had a roommate who looking back; wasn't so bad but at the time I just couldn't wrap my head around. I made lots of new "friends" in my dorm none of whom I would keep in contact with after that first year.
Senior Year Book Picture
Freshman in college - in Florida for Tgiving - studying
2003: I was in my first college musical. Turned down an internship with Disney World because (I'm stupid) I wanted to be a part of the sorority I joined and didn't want to be so far from boyfriend who I was still dragging on with even though he had cheated, I had cheated, and we loved each other so much we hated one another. I finished my first year in college and was looking forward to going back to nursing home to work for the summer when the bottom of my world dropped out. Boyfriend picked me up from a party early,early one morning and proceeded to smack, punch, twist, hit me all the way back to his area of town cursing me threatening to kill me and leave me dead in a park. By the grace of God I survived, filed a police report (the state eventually prosecuted though I unfortunately did not) and fled to Florida for the summer where my sister lived (ironic that I didn't take that internship huh?) I broke all contact with boy until I returned- there was a brief(pathetic) period of reconciliation but we eventually broke ties completely - actually on NYE 2003. In other news in the fall of 2003 I reconnected with Ben- my middle/high school friend and we started to get a little friendlier in December 2003. That fall I also went to NYC to be in the Macy's parade, Alabama for the GMAC bowl and oh- dyed part of my hair hot pink.
Love this picture: sophomore colorguard
Time in Florida to Reflect
2004: My motto was get more in 2004. I started off the year with a smidge of a wild streak but that was soon squashed by a blooming romance between Ben and myself. We officially began dating February 23rd 2004. Thus putting a pause on my friendship with my bff who had once dated Ben and was none to happy that we were dating. I did a lot of soul searching and determined that I had to see things out with Ben and told myself that eventually my friend would come around. Went to Florida with my mom for spring break, was in a play, told Ben I loved him for first time on a candy heart after a cast party one night. Survived the 17 year cicada outbreak! I signed the lease on my very first apartment, moved into apartment and had lots of crazy fun with my friend Rachel who was back in town for the summer. Designed makeup for a show, worked at Fin. Aid and joined Children's Theater. Where I met Jessica and we became fabulous friends. My grandfather whom my mother and I had been caring for passed away in December.
My wilder days with Julie
At the beginning...
We look so young!!!
Florida with Ma Mere
Blondes Having More Fun - Fo Sho!
College girl at a Red's game with her sissy
Our last family photo with Papaw
2005: Spring Breaked in Russia. Got to know Emily who I had been acquainted with for a few years through college classes and we also became amazing friends. Relationship with Ben continued to grow though we only saw each other on weekends. Did a summer tour in the midwest for children's theater, was in Seussical the musical, took summer classes and still worked at fin aid. A childhood friend's older sister died tragically in June and became the catalyst for me to begin making reconiciliations with Megan whom I saw at the funeral. Turned 21 sprained my ankle and oh yeah dyed hot pink streaks in my hair -again. In the fall I left my own cozy apartment and moved into a house with three girls. Mistake. During the school year (my first senior year) I decided that acting was no longer to be my focus and added Arts Management as a minor. I still worked at fin aid and also choreographed for a high school show choir. Three days before Christmas Megan's mom passed away and that rocked my world. Still grieving, I spent The New Year in Taiwain and it helped me to come out of my funk. To this day I say that evenwith no alcohol involved it was easily the best, most unique New Year ever!
Palace square Russia
Children's Theater cast passing time on Summer Tour- yup rollerskating
My 21st bday!
In front of the house I lived in with the girls
NYE in Taiwan
2006: Had a role in my last college play ever. Megan and I had another small falling out that lasted just a month or so. We patched things up and really began re-building our friendship. Spring breaked in Gatlinberg with Emily and Jessica and another friend. Finished my first senior year and signed on for another. Moved into my own apartment again but only spent the first couple of months actually staying there when Ben got his own apartment and I began staying there more and more frequently though it was a 45 minute drive to get back up for school. Did I mention I bought my first car for myself? I was asked to be a bridesmaid in my friend Julies fall 2007 wedding. I worked a lot that year. Still at Fin Aid, but also at JCPenney over the summer and Dillards over the holidays. Money was always an issue and I was beginning to stress over finding a job after graduation and where I would live when Ben made it official that I would move in with him (officially) after I was done with school.
My last college show: How I Learned To Drive
2007: Still worked at fin aid. Stayed with Ben and drove back and forth to school. In Febraury I lost control on black ice and flipped my car over. I climbed out the back window virtually unscathed. Was very withdrawn from college life and was ready for the whole thing to just be over.Spring breaked in Florida with Emily. Graduated college in May 2007 with a job lined up to work in group sales for a local amusement park working on corporate events. Moved stuff out of my apartment and in with Ben we were crammed into a tiny one bedroom apartment through the summer. I was probably the most tan I've ever been! Vacationed 10 days in North Carolina with girl friends. Watched the police excavate a dead body from a pond on the golf course at our apartment complex on my birthday. In the fall Ben and I moved into our townhouse and began painting and decorating. Two weeks before I was to be a bridesmaid in Julie's wedding the whole thing was called off. My job at the amusement park came to an end when the season ended and I got a job at a call center to pay the bills.
Spring Break with Em
We did it!
Really, really tan!
Ladies trip to North Carolina
2008: Discovered my hair stylist in January and have never looked back. Was asked to be a bridesmaid in friend Kristen's wedding. Friction developed between Ben and myself after our 4 year anniversary and discussion over whether we would ever get married. We were definitely in a rocky patch for awhile. Applied, interviewed, and was offered my current position for more money than expected. Kristen's wedding came and went. Ben and I had a bleak month where we thought the whole thing may be ending between us but rekindled and patched things up to be better than ever. Reconciled with an old friend. Worked really hard at being good at my job.
2009: Caught wind that I might be getting a proposal around Valentines Day - and I did! Fell into wedding plans exctatically then Ben got laid off three days later. Celebrated our 5 year dating anniversary in late February. Assistant announced her engagement and just a few months later discovered she was pregnant! Took a long weekend with Emily, Ben, and Emily's family to Lake Cumberland. Went to New Kids on the Block concert with Megan. Hired then fired wedding photographer. Ben got a new car. I bought my wedding dress! Worked a lot! Was a bridesmaid at my best friend's wedding!
Can't wait to wear it for real!
So what are we looking forward to in 2010?
Our wedding of course! Honeymoon in Mexico! Our 6th and "last" dating anniversary Ben getting a really awesome new job Getting (at least) closer to buying a house Both of us being super hot for 2010 (resolutions to follow soon- believe you me!) Lots of new babies in our circle of friends Starting a new chapter of our life as a married couple And just continuing to get better with age!
In the spirit of further personalizing our wedding .... and lets be hones; saving some cash as well, I've been looking into the idea of having my bridesmaids carry something other than the traditional flower bouquet down the aisle. I mean I love flowers don't get me wrong- but the idea of $60 + dollars a piece for a chunk of flowers my girls will carry for 3o minutes makes me nauseous. So, though I've come to no conclusion yet and by no means have I ruled out flowers here are some of the ideas (both good and questionable) that I have found that good help contribute to our retro garden inspired wedding.
We'll start with the questionable:
The idea in and of its self is cute. But then I wonder how balloons actually look at the alter and there's the issue of wind and them blowing in our faces - and heaven forbid one should pop! Uhmmm probably not....
I like this idea. Open flame makes me nervous but I think there are a number of ways this idea could be tweaked.
And from a different approach we could even make our own tin can lanters to spell out a word once all the girls are at the alter....but would that be distracting? Perhaps....but definitely less distracting than balloons!
The hearts are cute that's for sure. Maybe a little too literal though- at least unless its a Valentines wedding.
Just spell it out? I don't know - again maybe too distracting from the ceremony and a little too boxing match ring girl...
Parisoles Cute and quite cost effective but a little too Three little girls from school for my taste. Besides how could they ever contribute to the reception decor as I think it would be bad luck to have 7 open umbrellas indoors at our wedding reception.
This I have to admit was my very own idea. Continuing with the garden theme I thought it could be very cute and unique to have each maid carry a jar of "fireflies" down the aisle. Of course I would pretty up the jars with ribbon to make them look a bit less rustic. I still like the idea but am not sure it would communicate and instead people would scratch their heads in confusion and think I was nuts. Another problem? Though I can find lots of sites that once sold these cute little jars, they are all currently out of stock and maybe never to return.
Butterflies: (The most recent and promising idea as of yet)
This idea was featured over the summer in Martha Stewart weddings and again as a flashback in the new issue. I think it is super cute and still reads as a traditional bouquet with a twist.
They would be super easy to make as the butterflies our wired and the best part is a pack of 12 butterflies runs right around 5 dollars. I would probably be looking at about $20 bucks a pop for each bouquet which I love!
After a small amount of online perusing I found these butterflies that I think would work nicely" (I would probably also mix in a little green so there would be more depth)
I'm really liking this last idea the best but could see myself going in a number of directions...there are just so many great ideas! I never saw myself going the route of the nontraditional but the more I dig into these creative ideas- the more I love them! Any thoughts? I'm all ears!
In my most simple form I am an explosion of endearing quirks and delightfully glamorous tendencies. Some of my most wonderful talents and qualities include but of course are not limited to: cracking an egg with one hand, applying mascara without a mirror, freakishly perfect and neat printing skills, a completely unashamed love for incredibly girly and sometimes questionably un-adult things (if my choice of paper clips happens to be silver or pink- I'm always going to go for the pink) a never-ending devotion to all things stationary (planners, notepads, greeting cards, post-it notes)My love of both The Girls Next Door and John and Kate + Eight and desire to live both lifestyles simultaneously (well, with far fewer children than 8!) an admitted addiction to cosmetics,lotions, and potions, and of course the pretty fingers that type the thoughtful words that bring this blog to you today-XOXO!