Thursday, December 9, 2010

My first Christmas tree!

I will be the first to admit, ever since I've lived outside my parents' house I've been a total scrooge about getting a Christmas tree. (Cindy, Chelse, and Chelsie will back me up on this.) It just always seemed like too much work, extra money I didn't have in December, too much mess, etc etc etc.
Then this year I found myself contemplating it when I realized there happened to be a little area a tree could go, ya know, if I felt like going through all that effort. I thought about getting a fake tree because a real tree would be too much hassle and I didn't want to deal with all the pine needles falling everywhere. But no, I thought to myself, if I'm getting a tree it's going to be a real one! But then I thought to myself, but no, there's all those pesky pine needles.
Then last night something happened. I'd happened to be in Macy*s on 34th Street and saw Santa (which is a whole other story in and of itself) and I was just feeling especially festive. So as I was walking through Lincoln Center on my way home I decided to walk through the tree lot on 67th. And then I saw it. My tree. I knew it when I saw it. I guess you could say I didn't choose this tree, it chose me. (Sadly, I'm serious.) So I talked to the tree lot lady for a few minutes and then boom, the tree was mine! It would be delivered by 10pm that night. Hurray!
I then went home to drop some things off, and happened to get three Christmas cards in my mailbox. Yay! Then as I was walking to meet some girlfriends for dinner, listening to some Christmas tunes, I realized I felt so incredibly happy!! Seriously I felt like I could burst, I was so happy about my tree and Christmas in general. I would never have thought in a million years I could be so happy about a 4'10" plant in my small space. But I was.
After dinner Court and I stopped at Duane Reade and Bed Bath and Beyond, and sadly, to my extreme disappointment, there wasn't any white lights or boxed ornaments. Lame! So I settled with the idea that I'd decorate tonight instead. Sigh.
So today during work I took a little break and bought lights and ornaments. I had a hard time deciding what to get. I just cannot pick out things that involve committing to colors. In my mind, my Christmas tree should be either gold and silver, or multi colored with homemade ornaments. (Hm....maybe because that's what I grew up with?) If there is a color scheme, it should definitely involve Christmas colors, like red and gold, or red and green. Definitely not non-Christmasy colors. (I don't mind it on other trees, just not mine.) And then I found myself purchasing a big gold bow (for the topper) gold ball ornaments, and pink and purple ball ornaments. Whaaaaat?
I kept telling Courtnie over and over, "I really don't want to have a slutty tree." (The check out people got a kick out of this.) But really though, a tree with pink and purple ornaments?
But, it worked. I texted a picture to Courtnie and got a confirmation. SO CUTE! Not slutty at all! YES!
So I added in my travel ornaments (I collect ornaments from places I've traveled to....except I only have a few at this point...and the one I got in Australia, the one that started the trend, is at my parents' house.)

So.......now that you have the background, meet Tanya (the Tannenbaum.) I can't help it. I love it so much I wanted to name it. :)




When I first moved here I decided I would buy an ornament every year, choosing something to symbolize that year. So far I've only bought one for 2009, woops. For the life of me I could not get a clear photo of this one.

My cable car from San Francisco this summer with Becky and Chelse.

From my trip to San Antonio with Dad last year.

With the lights out.

Merry Christmas!!!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

You should be totally jeal'

Today I finally got to meet one of the most special girls in the world, Piper Jane. Little Pip is a giant in a tiny body. She touches the hearts of hundreds, probably thousands, all over the blogging world (and real world.) Her mama is a friend of mine, Reagan. Reags writes one of my favorite blogs, Reagan's Blob. She is entertaining, funny, has amazing fashion sense, and inspiring. I love her blob because it always lifts me up, makes me laugh, and shed a tear or two (the good kind.)
Reag and I met right after I moved to New York, and I'm so glad we did, because years later we reconnected on the blogging world and realized we'd already met and were already friends.
She's now my hair stylist (which is a huge deal because I'd been going to the same girl back in California since I was 15 and was scared to find someone new.) She also has a hair blog, which I love, Hair Dresser on Fire.
Anyway, I love this family. We don't get to hang out as much as I'd like because we live a good distance from each other (but thankfully not as much now that I moved!) and because life just gets insane. We've been trying to nail down a date to get together for weeks, but something always comes up. Luckily, when Reagan asked me yesterday if I was free this morning to go see Piper I could say yes! I was so excited to finally meet this little darling I've been loving to pieces through piptures and stories thanks to her mom and dad, Jake, who I should mention was one of the nicest, first people I met when I moved here.
It's no surprise this family is so loved in the real world and blogging world. Okay, enough gushing, thanks for being my friends Reagan, Jake and Piper! You are some of my favs! (PS Did I mention they totally inspired my this year by running the NYC marathon? They're hardcore.)
Piper giggling with her mama, in their matching stripes.

Piper taking a nappy.

When we had to leave Piper was still sleeping. Reagan put her in her bed and she immediately pulled her blankie over her head. How adorable is she, and how jealous are you of her cute shoes? I know. You should see her entire collection. I died over them.

PS Sadly I don't have a pipture to prove it, but you better believe I mauled little Piper. Thankfully she was super friendly and let me. (Don't be too deceived though, she is a spunky sassy little thing, and I did get backhanded once. And I loved it.) :)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Loving:

The changing leaves (as documented below from my girls only Berkshires trip last weekend.)
Living alone.
Trying out new classes at the gym (pole dancing, boxing, yoga.)
Meeting new people, especially new men.
Living on the Upper West Side.
Post season baseball (even though my Yankees are now out.)
Staying much more busy than I anticipated in my life without roommates.







Friday, September 3, 2010

All moved in.






Don't know where it's all gonna go. Happy as a clam.

Moving day!




Sitting on the floor of my very own place while the under the table, cash only, very little English speaking Craigslist movers unload the truck. (I'd help, especially since I'm paying by the hour, but it'd be one of those "too many cooks" situations.)
So so excited and so so happy. Feeling very blessed.
Happy Moving Day!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

My friend is awesome





Jenna was at the Emmys tonight. She's so awesome! So excited to say I knew her when...
Way to go Jenna!!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Welcome baby Jared!

Now that I've seen that my sister has officially announced Jared's arrival on her blog I can announce it as well. Jared Steven came into the world on August 20, 2010 weighing a whopping 9 pounds 13 ounces, and was 21 inches long.
Way to go Rebecca! So happy for their family for their third little addition. Can't wait to meet that boy and smother him.

Today

Today was perfect. The weather was about 85 degrees and a small group of us went to Long Beach. It was only the second time I've been able to make it to the beach in New York this summer. As I've mentioned, I've had plans almost every weekend all summer to be out of town or have friends in town. Luckily I was able to make it to the beach twice in California earlier this month as well. I feel sufficiently tanned for the summer.
I have to admit, even though I was totally anti until last summer, I like the beach here more then back in California. I really didn't love the beach that much growing up. It just all seemed like such a hassle. Drive all the way down to San Clemente (where we always went growing up) try to find parking (and pay for it), schlep all your stuff down the beach, and then get all sandy, bring about half the beach home with you in your car, and go home. I'd much rather just go to the pool.
It's not as if going to the beach is the easiest thing ever here, but it just doesn't feel like as much as a hassle to me. Get yourself to Penn, buy a ticket for the LIRR, and sit on the train and chat with your friends for 40 minutes. Then it's a 5 minute walk.
One of the reasons I used to be a hater of beaches here is you have to pay to get in. Who pays to go to the beach? After experiencing the beach here (at least Long Beach) I totally don't mind. I think a combo ticket for the train and beach is like $14 and it's totally worth it. The beach is considered a state park, and the money goes towards keeping the beach nice. It's totally worth it. The sand is clean, which is so nice. No cigarette butts or wood chips or rocks. Just nice pure sand. I love it.
Not to mention, the water's warmer here! It makes no sense to me, but it is.
Lastly, and another reason why I love New York itself, is the public transportation. It's really nice that anyone can leave whenever they want. There's a train going back to the city basically every half hour. I love it.
Usually when we go to the beach there's a huge group, which is fine, and fun, but today it was just four of us, and it was really nice. The weather was perfect and the group was great.

When we got home the water was out in our building so we had to wait around for an hour or so to shower. That was a huge bummer but not the end of the world. After I finally could shower I just spent the evening at home alone, which was so nice. I didn't feel like going out so I just stayed in and got my laundry done and watched a little tv. It was perfect.

Oh yeah, also, while riding the 1 train to Penn this morning I noticed Jodi Foster get on and sit right across from me, right next to Britt and Brad. I've seen a lot of pictures in Us Weekly of celebrities in subways but I've never actually seen one. She looked great and was in really good shape.

Happy weekend!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

So here's the thing...

Basically I don't feel like blogging. Maybe I will again one day. I hope I will. But for now, I don't. So here's a few of my favorite pics from the last few weeks.

Aimee and Jerry's wedding. Loved it. She wore her grandmother's dress. It wasn't altered, restored, or even dry cleaned. Perfect condition. Perfect size. Perfect for Aim. She made her own veil. So Aim. It was such a perfect day and perfect night. Love Jerry. Even though I only met him the night before I can tell he's so perfect for her. I was so happy to be a part of this wedding.

I picked raspberries with my grandpa in Rexburg. This was the first day of the second week of my vacation, and the first moment I actually felt truly relaxed. The first few days of vaca were kind of a whirlwind with the changes I mentioned in my last post, and then it was the wedding madness. It was so nice to spend this Monday morning in beautiful, peaceful Idaho, picking berries in the front yard.

Less than 48 hours in San Francisco was a quick trip but so worth it to see the city with two of my besties from college.

Last weekend I hit up the Berkshires with 15 friends. It was glorious. I have the best ex-BB ever. That pool was zen. It was like the stoner corner of the property. At one point we were just chillin in the pool, sitting on our noodles, not really saying anything to each other and just zoning out. Nothing says relaxation like a 95 degree pool. I wanna go back.

Okay here's the exciting news in a nutshell. I'm an auntie again! Rebecca had Jared Steven last Friday. He came in at a whopping 9 pounds 13 ounces, and 21 inches. My sister makes some linebackers.

The other exciting news.....I've been going through a long approval process for an apartment. It's taken almost a month but I found out I made it through the last of the approval process (meeting with the president of the co-op board) today. As of September 3 I will officially be living in my own apartment on the Upper West Side. I. Am. Stoked.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

My heart's elsewhere.

I'm here, but mentally I'm somewhere else. On Sunday I got back from my core leave. I was away from New York for 16 days but it felt like at least 30. It's true what they say, in a New York minute everything can change.
So many pretty heavy changes have occurred, and so many to come. Some are my doing, and some were like a rug being pulled out from under me.
I feel like I have delayed jetlag and I just don't have the energy.
Friday I'm heading to the Berkshires for the weekend so if I don't blog tomorrow it'll be next week.
Sorry to leave you hanging. This is all I've got in me. For now, enjoy the big sky of Idaho. I miss it.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Dear Asians

Please stop leaving me comments on every single post in mandarin, cantonese, chinese........whatever. Sorry if I'm being offensive, but obviously I don't understand your language.
PLEASE STOP!!

Monday, July 12, 2010

All good things.

Me and Mad. Fourth of July weekend.

I have felt little-to-no desire to blog. Hence the silence. Things have been good though. Great, actually.
Here's the latest of what I've been up to, and what's to come, without pictures, because I just don't have the energy. It's basically a run down of the summer, Memorial Day to Labor Day, because it's pretty much all planned out. Insanity.

  • I think I probably mentioned the fact that I went to Duck. I had a great time. It turns out when you go with the lowest expectations and little desire to scope out the dudes you have a much better time. I told myself I wouldn't stay anywhere longer than I wanted, or do anything I didn't want to, and it was the best decision. I was able to catch up with old friends and make new ones.
  • The following weekend was my birthday, which was awesome, and I believe I recapped.
  • The following weekend was Megan's wedding in California. Which was so great. I loved it. I'm so thrilled for her. The wedding was beautiful and the reception was a blast. It made me really decide that one day when I get married I want to have a small(er) wedding and not invite everyone I've ever met like most LDS people do. I would love to have everyone there, but I think it would be nice to have a smaller-ish affair, one that people come and stay and enjoy the evening, rather than just doing a driveby. I hate that. But that's just what happens when everyone invites everyone they know, so then everyone has several weddings to attend all summer, and can only go to so many. We'll see though. I'm sure everyone reading this probably thinks, "Yeah right, I wanted the same thing but it just doesn't turn out that way."
  • The following weekend I went camping with some friends in the Catskills. It was super fun. There were eighteen of us. It was really well organized and we had a great time. We hung out, played bocce ball, frisbee, football, whiffle ball, cards, games, truth or dare, and chatted the night away. There were a million stars in the sky, the fire was endless, the food was good, the company was great. The weather was perfect. It was so, so fun. My favorite part was tubing down the river.
  • The following weekend I didn't have major plans set in stone, which was nice. I organized a big group to go to the beach and it was one of the best beach days I've ever had. The group was great, the weather was perfect, and we just had a blast. Perfect combo of old friends and new, uptowners and downtowners. We got a lot of sun and really enjoyed ourselves. That night I took Mikey Perkey to a Sadie Hawkins dance with my roommate and another guy, and Monica and Jason. Mike and I wore Yankees garb, natch. I think the best part of the whole night was eating pizza in Central Park amongst the lightning bugs.
  • The next weekend was the 4th of July. I headed up to Brad and Nadia's new home(!!) in New Hampshire. I loved it so much. I'm so happy for them. I can't believe all my siblings now have mortgages and kids. We celebrated the 4th, their new home, Nadia's birthday, and their second baby who is due in January!! So so exciting. I can't believe the three grandbabies will because six in six short months! I'm a happy aunty.
  • This last weekend was very chill, which was really nice. The only commitment I had was Kam's birthday dinner Friday night which was really nice. A group of us went out in Little Italy. Saturday I slept in and then my roommates, Courtnie, and I went to the Shake Shack. We ended up going to the one on the UWS, and then I walked down the west side until hopping on the subway at Houston Street. It ended up being about 5 miles. I jogged at times, but mostly walked because I haven't been running and the humidity was killer. It was really nice to do that though. My body needed it and my psyche needed it even more.
  • Speaking of the humidity, summer is here in full force, and I sort of love it. I have completely morphed into one of those people who loves the seasons, and I'm just fine with that.
  • Tomorrow night I'm checking an item off the NY bucket list and going to the Philharmonic in Central Park.
  • Last week a group of about 15 of us met up and rode bikes over to Artichoke for pizza. There were another five or so who met up with us there. It was a BLAST, to say the least. So fun to have so many riding bikes together. Loved it.
  • Thursday Sean and Becky come into town and I'm so excited. Love those two. We'll be hitting up a Yankees' game because Sean is a huge fan. Becky is a die hard Cubs fan but she's humoring Sean (and me.) :)
  • Cindy, Jake, and Blaine welcomed little Ty to the world, and he came home this week!
  • Jill won Wipeout!!
  • Next Monday my friends and I are taking a trapeze class!! This is another item that has been on my NY bucket list for a few years now. I am SO excited.
  • Later in the week Chris comes into town, and then Melissa comes into town after.
  • On the 30th I take off for California. I'll be there for a week to celebrate Aimee and Jerry's big day in LA. So excited for them and so honored to be a part of their wedding.
  • I'll be spending a week at my parents' and I'm so excited. Usually when I go out it's for a long weekend, and if it's any longer it's Christmas time and so hectic. I have a feeling I'll still find a way to stay busy but I'm looking forward to the time out there anyways.
  • Then I'll be roadtripping up to Salt Lake City, making stops in Vegas and St. George to see old friends. So excited. I decided to make my two week core leave a week of seeing family and friends. I'll be spending a few days in SLC at my grandma's visiting her and other friends.
  • Then off to Boise to visit Shantay and meet baby Maya. Can't wait!
  • Next stop, Rexburg, to visit the old stomping grounds, and more importantly my grandparents.
  • Lastly, a big roadtrip with my love Chelse to San Francisco!! SF has been on my short list of US cities to visit (along with Seattle and New Orleans) for a while now. I haven't been there since my family lived there when I was a baby. I'm so excited to go back. I'm so excited to roadtrip with Chels, and so excited that Becky is meeting up with us there for a girls' trip.
  • I'll get back to the city Aug 15 and then the following weekend am heading the Berkshires.
  • The following weekend I'll be doing some last minute things in preparation to move to the UWS! So excited for this change. It's something I feel I really need and am really looking forward to. I don't have a place yet but am just starting to get more serious about looking (since apartments don't really open up until about 4-6 weeks before move in.) I can't wait for a new ward, to be closer to Central Park, to meet new friends, and become closer with old friends.
Life is good. Things can be hard at times but we get through it. I have a lot to pray for, and a lot to be grateful for. I am so happy to be where I am right now. On my long walk on Saturday things were just confirmed that I am in the right place. I love this city so much and can't imagine living anywhere else. I belong here.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

She was lovely.

Image stolen from Kamari's facebook.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Here comes the bride...

Megan's bridal shower in California, May 8, 2010. So fun to surprise her.

So happy to have made it to California for this girl's wedding Saturday. The rehearsal dinner's tonight and I could not be more thrilled for Megan and Travis. Love you Meg, so happy we've been friends for twelve(!) years, and so honored to stand next to you on your big day!!

Monday, June 7, 2010

An annual problem

I guess I just get the urge to binge this time of year.
(Disregard the shoe...it just happened to be in the photo. It's not new.)

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Birthday weekend highlights


  • Sunshine all weekend!
  • Too much shopping and not feeling too guilty.
  • Leaving work at 1pm.
  • All the sweet texts, voicemails, facebook posts, tweets, emails, cards, and phone calls with birthday wishes.
  • The two birthday voicemails that made me smile non stop while listening, while I was on the subway. One from Rebecca's kids, and the next from Jason and Elise, channeling Howard Dean. I laughed out loud and noticed a guy looking at me funny. I should have had him listen to the voicemail.
  • A few dozen Magnolia's cupcakes at work by 11am, courtesy of the boss man. I had two red velvet (my favorite) before lunch.
  • Going to lunch with the boss man, Nat, and even Charlie. One of my favorites who no longer works with us and came all the way to midtown to meet up with us.
  • Sushi at Koi. Delicious.
  • The birthday song at Koi, and even a candle in my dessert.
  • Meeting up with Ash at the spa for a massage and facial.
  • Getting a text from Will informing me I had flowers delivered at work. Quick story: I had no clue who would send flowers, and assumed it had to be my mom. I rushed back to midtown to pick them up before heading home to get ready for dinner. There were two bouquets of two dozen peach roses, and two dozen red roses. I figured my mom wouldn't send roses. I saw no card, even though I looked everywhere. I texted Will and didn't get a response till after I'd gotten home saying there was a note, but he'd accidently thrown it in the trash (!) but that it said, "Happy birthday Rachel. From so and so." He couldn't remember. WHAT? I felt so guilty not being able to thank whoever the kind person was who made my day, so I posted something on facebook. I later thought to call reception at my office building to see if they could keep the cleaning ladies from taking out my trash. The girl at the front desk said she already had, and then we got to chatting and she told me should could tell me what the note said. (First off, you know who I am? Second off, you know what the note said?? I was too relieved to care.) So a big fat THANK YOU to one of my favorites, Jamar, for the gorgeous flowers. Love that Jam. Such a sweetie.
  • Dinner with some of my favorite girls at one of my favorite Mexican restaurants.
  • Finally, saw Sex and the City II. It was about what I was expecting. Not the best movie ever, but entertaining, and really funny. I died laughing a few times.
  • Coming home Friday night to a display of goldfish and macaroni and cheese. Libby knows the way to my heart. It reminded me of the time Aimee had me for our Easter basket exchange in college and she got me a basket filled with Dr. Pepper and mac and cheese.
  • On Saturday, a little more birthday shopping.
  • A great combo party (since Britt's birthday was less than two weeks ago and she was in Georgia.) We only got the invite sent out three days in advance and still had a great turnout. Our apartment got so hot, even with the AC turned on full blast and a fan going, but luckily people didn't seem to mind too much and stuck around.
  • The mini dance party that broke out for a few songs. Not to mention singing, "It's a party in 7A" instead of "party in the USA."
  • Ashley baking for the party.
  • Listening to Rachel Martinez and Mikey Perkey battle it out for who was the better friend. My favorite "one up lines":
M: I know Rachel's boss has a house in the Berkshires.
R: I've BEEN to Rachel's boss's house in the Berkshires!
R: I've slept in a bed with Rachel.
M: So have I!
  • Friends like Dr. Asay who took time away from his hectic schedule to make an appearance at the party (even though he skipped his strip tease he performed last year.)
  • Birthday brunch and some good gossip.
  • Feeling so loved and special.
Thank so much to everyone!! I'll upload some pictures soon, hopefully. Also, the only birthday phone call I've returned is my mom's. I've literally been with people all weekend long and haven't had time to chat on the phone until now, while I'm writing this blog post. I'll talk to you all soon. Love you so much and thank you again for making my day!!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

I got nothin but mush on the brain.

The next month is going to be ridiculously busy, and who knows when I'll blog. The muffin top was at the top of my blog for far too long, and I guess I shouldn't leave the last post up top for too long either.
I feel like I've got so much to say and so much going on in my mind, so who knows if I'll get it all out. Here's my best attempt:
  • I didn't think it was necessary to mention that the photo of the muffin top was not of me. Yes, I have one, but thankfully it's not quite so plump. :) But listen, if yours is, it's fine, just don't dress like that! Sheesh, cover up honey!
  • Also, I noticed a few posts back I mentioned something like how sometimes I might be sad when I don't hate roommates. I did NOT mean to write hate! I meant HAVE. Someday I'll be sad when I don't HAVE roommates. Sorry if anyone thought I hated them!! :( I love my roommates! They're great!
  • I'd always planned on not going to Duck this year. I just had no desire. It's hard to explain. Duck is a lot of fun, but I've gone the last two years and I just feel over it. And thennnnnnnnn, I got sucked in. I asked for a spot, and then got one, and then baled. And then I got sucked in again, asked again, and got a spot. And wanted to bale. But felt guilty. I'm glad I'm going. It'll be fun. The weather doesn't look like it'll be great which is lame. But I'm looking forward to experiencing Duck without the relationship drama I had the last two years. I'm looking forward to catch up with one of my favorites, Rachel M., who is my true Duck Beach love who I met my first year at Duck. I haven't seen her since December when we met up at the Berkshires which is far too long. I'm looking forward to venting, gossiping, and catching up, whether it be on the beach in the sun or on a cozy couch while it rains. And I know the guys are looking forward to a Rachel sandwich. :)
  • I should probably also mention that when I wrote that "what you don't see" post I wasn't sad or down, and I hope it didn't come off that way (although I admit, while writing it I did get a little blue!) I'm in a really good place right now and life is never totally easy, but things are good!
  • While I'm at it, I really want to say THANK YOU for all your comments. They were so sweet and uplifting and I really loved them. It seems like the posts that are the most real are the ones most people relate to (or at least feel the need to comment on) so I'm going to try to keep it real up on this blog.
  • I'm sorry if my last post was cryptic and/or confusing. I suppose I should clarify, in case it needs to be said, that I am healthy, and I apologize if I confused anyone. One of my best friend's mom is battling the big C right now, and yesterday a dear friend was just given a diagnosis that was not what we were expecting. It's crazy how fast life can change. I mean like, unreal. Sorry for not going into more detail. If you're curious and want to know more about what's going on feel free to email me, I just don't want to put any more details on the www for just anyone to read.
  • And I guess that's about it for now. My brain is mush. Seriously. You know when something tragic happens and you can't focus or think straight and make mistakes all day and forget things? Today was the first day I really experienced that. It is really weird. I'm typically a pretty organized person who can keep it together for the most part. My memory isn't what it used to be and I have to write things down more, but I mean, after getting the news last night and having a few hours to let it sink in I just can't get it together. I was a stammering fool all day, and switching my words non stop, like asking my coworker if heartburn is what you use for Tums. And having to repeat myself over and over. When trying to ask my boss something today I kept stumbling over my words and tearing up and stuttering and I finally just plainly said to my boss, "I don't know what I'm doing." Praise the Lord for that bossman. He is the best person to work for in the entire world. I'm serious. He gets it and he understands and is gracious and generous and the most kind man. Ever.

Anyway, I don't mean to end on such a downer but, like I said, I'm keeping it real up in here and this is me today. Oh yeah, here's something happy! My brother was in the city today and even though he and I were both incredibly busy and incredibly stressed we were able to work it out so we could meet up for a little grub and a lot of laughs. He always does that for me and it's seriously the best medicine. Nothing like laughing to the point of banging your hand on the table, clutching your gut, and annoying the patrons around you. Nothing. When we were standing in line for our food the thought hit me hard, "Wow, it is really great to see him."

Alright, I gotta go pack. Boo. I hate packing.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Dear cancer


My friends are going to kick your @$$. Big time.

Friday, May 14, 2010

What you don't see


One of my favorite bloggers recently linked an article that gives a fresh reminder that what we read online about our friends' (and friends of friends) lives isn't always the entire picture. I'll be honest, I don't find too many blogs I feel are that fake or that frustrating. I feel like a lot of the blogs I read can get pretty real. However, that doesn't stop me from getting frustrated in myself for lacking the talents I see others possess. I wish I could say so much in so few words like Katie, or take awesome photos and decorate my home so beautifully like Elise, or always be dressed super cute and be so funny like Reagan. I could go on and on about all my friends and their talents. And if you haven't noticed, I feel like all my siblings (and in law) tend to pretty much just have it together. I can find myself feeling overwhelmed, inadequate, and worrying that I won't live up to my potential.

Then again, I have people telling me how I'm so lucky to live such a fun and carefree life in New York. How I'm always traveling or doing something fun in the city. How I'm lucky to have the best job ever and can do whatever I want and take off whenever I want. I try to be pretty honest and paint an accurate picture of my life, but there's plenty you don't see.

Katie linked to a few other blogs whose authors posted "What you don't see" confessionals, if you will. I loved reading these. They remind me that no matter how great others' lives seem, we all have bad days. We all have bad things happen to us. We all have flaws. We all have insecurities and things we'd like to change about ourselves. So in the spirit of spreading the reminder that we're all human, I give you my version of "What you don't see":

What you don't see is how even though it drives me crazy I let the bathroom trash get a little more full than it should.

What you don't see is that I don't wash my work out clothes every time after working out in them.

What you don't see is that sometimes I get ready to go to the gym, and instead sit on the couch and have goldfish and a soda for dinner.

What you don't see is the part of my job where I clean out personal items of just-let-go employees to put in a box and ship to their home. The pictures of their kids and wives they have to go home to and tell they don't have a job anymore.

What you don't see is the pressure I feel to get a more prestigious job because I live in New York and everyone else does something really sophisticated.

What you don't see are the times I take bike rides or go to the movies or make dinner by myself, wishing it was shared with a significant other. (For the record, sometimes, a lot of times actually, I don't mind and even sometimes enjoy doing these things alone, so don't feel sorry for me if I blog about it later. I don't always feel sad about it.)

What you don't see are the moments I feel like an idiot because people at work are talking about the market and I don't understand 95% of what they're saying.

What you don't see is the fear I have that I won't ever have that desire to have kids so many girls talk about. So many girls say how they wish they were just married and having babies. Yes, frequently I wish I was married, but I don't feel that burning desire to have babies. I'm hoping it develops after marriage. But I don't ever hear anyone else say they feel the same, so I sometimes wonder if something's wrong. I adore my sibling's and friends kids, but I don't feel that little something at this point that makes me crave my own.

What you don't see is the dust on any flat surface in my room because even though I hate clutter and try to keep things looking tidy, I hate to dust and deep clean.

What you don't see is when I stress out over making ends meet because I took a vacation.

What you don't see is when I feel like a hill billy because I'm sitting at a nice restaurant, looking at the menu and I don't know what half the dishes are, and the other half sound disgusting and I find myself thinking, "I wish I was at Olive Garden."

What you don't see are the countless nights I've spent up all hours upset and fighting with boyfriends that should have been out of my life months prior. You don't see that I've never been someone who can break up once and cut ties. It always drags out, and that's usually my fault.

What you don't see is that I've always been the one more in love, and can't imagine being completely adored and how it would feel to receive the love at the level I've given it.

What you don't see is that even though I am ecstatic for my friends and so happy for them, and love being involved in their weddings, there's always a part of me that feels a little sad while I'm there that I'm still on the single side.

What you don't see is how I work really hard at accepting that marriage may never come to me in this life, and how I focus so much energy on making the most of a single life.

What you don't see is the anxiety I feel at parties, and the guilt I feel if I don't go.

What you don't see are the poor decisions I've made and make.

What you don't see is that most of the time I'm bored in Sunday School.

What you don't see are the times I gossip and speak negatively of others when I should be more positive.

What you don't hear are the curses that come out of my mouth way too casually now.

What you don't see is that sometimes the reason I'm on time to church is because I broke the Sabbath and took a cab because I needed those few extra minutes.

What you don't see (or do, if you're my roommate) is the food I've left in the fridge for weeks because I always forget about it.

What you don't see are the super easy to read books on my Kindle.

What you don't see is the muffin top over those skinny jeans that look like they fit perfectly.

All this doesn't take away from the fact that a majority of the time I do feel confident, fabulous, and happy, because it truly is a choice. I enjoy my life and count my blessings frequently. There's a saying that if everyone threw their trials in a big pile and could choose whose to take on, we'd all go back and pick out our own. I completely agree with this. However, that being said, there's plenty of super sucky days and weeks and months and we all have them. Let's celebrate our differences and lift each other up during those bad times.

Ouch

Last night some girlfriends and I tried out a class at Physique. It. Was. Rough. But a great workout. Today I can definitely feel it in my arms, legs, booty, and especially my back. Thank goodness Maria was with us, she's become a pro since she started taking classes a month or so ago. It was brutal but great to do it with friends. I had a hard time controlling my laughter when I'd catch one us pulling a "Lord help me" face. I have to admit though, it was one of my favorite Visiting Teaching get togethers.

I keep thinking I'm going to do an update post with photos of what I've been up to but it just hasn't happened, and it won't happen in this post either. Tonight I'm watching a six month old and seven month old. Yep, basically twins (but they're cousins.) I have little B in my lap as I'm typing in this because he just likes to be held, and little S laying next to me, happy as a clam. These are some happy babies! Oh yeah, and for some reason the only song I can think of to sing is the elmo song. Okay, time to go....

Monday, May 10, 2010

Happy 36th anniversary Mom and Dad

My favorite photo.

Too busy (and unmotivated) to blog


But check out these photos Elise got of me with the kids. I saw these little wooden toys in Buzios that were just like the ones we had as kids, almost 25 years ago. (Am I that old??) I flew home to California to surprise my mom for Mother's Day, and boy, surprise her did I! I've never seen her so shocked. The story, more photos, and updates later. For now I'm catching up on my sleep after that 36 hour cross country trip.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Meet my BFFs: Jason

After painting the ceiling in his new house, 2010.

It's Cinco de Mayo, and more importantly, Jason's birthday! I always look forward to getting the answers back for these interviews, because I usually learn something new and I'm always surprised by an answer or two. I really expected Jason's interview to be pretty straight forward, and not very wordy (although, that's pretty typical for any man.) I didn't really expect to see so much of Jason's softer, fuzzy side. Up until Jason's mission, he always was just pretty much the rational, logical one in the family. After he got back I started to see a little more of his emotional side, and since he's been married it has really developed. After finishing reading Jason's answers I said, audibly, "Awwww, that is so dang cute!!" My roommates asked me what I was talking about and I filled them in on my *favorite answer he gave. Jason has always been a good man, but Elise and marriage have made him an amazing man. I can see as he's in the beginning stages of fatherhood (Bambino due in September!) he's only becoming better. He has become so well rounded and successful in about every way possible.
Jason is another one who's really just got it together. When I think of someone I should go to for advice for so many different things in life, Jason comes to mind. He always makes smart decisions. He's responsible, very dedicated, extremely hard working, funny, balanced, honest, and, just like my sister (and other brother, for that matter), just does what's right. He does his home teaching, he magnifies his calling, he doesn't lack in work ethic. He makes a point to go around and say hello to everyone at social gatherings when it's sometimes so much easier to sit in a corner with those with whom you're comfortable. He stands up for what's right and doesn't tolerate someone rationalizing otherwise. He looks out for his family and protects those he loves. I remember a letter he wrote to me when I was a freshman in college while he was on his mission. He warned me to watch out for the wolves in sheep's clothing (regarding dating.) This is something that's stuck with me, even almost ten years later. A funny example of his protective nature (that wasn't so funny at the time) was my sophomore year of high school (he was a senior.) I was watching tv in my parents' living room with a boy I liked (that Jason didn't trust) at about 2am on a Saturday night. I'll never forget him yelling down from the hallway upstairs, "Rachel, I think it's time for bed." I. Was. Livid. How dare he embarrass me and treat me like a baby. (16?? I was a baby. Who was I kidding?) Now I look back at that moment and laugh, and hope I'll have a son who watches over my daughter that way.
I really miss the days when we were both in college and could hang out on any given weekend. Life has gone on, and now we're 3000 miles apart and have jobs and responsibilities. I'm so grateful, however, that we've been able to remain close, and have only gotten closer thanks to his choice of a wife. I'm lucky enough that Jason occasionally comes to the city and we can get together for dinners. I'm also grateful we both work in the financial industry. Jason and I don't have a lot of similar interests, however since I've worked in this industry I've found we have so much more to discuss, whether it be finances or politics. We both have CNBC on all day at work, and I love when one of us emails the other about some goofy looking person on tv. Sometimes I'll just get an email saying, "Quick, look at the tv." It makes me laugh and at the same time so happy because I feel like we're sitting in the same room, and not on opposite sides of the country.
Jason is such a good husband and the the love he has for his wife is what I dream of my husband having for me. He absolutely adores her.
Happy birthday Bay! I hope your day was awesome!! I love you! (PS I'm also grateful there's another person in the family who will root for the Yankees!!)


Taking me for a scoot in San Diego, Thanksgiving 2008

Jason and Elise, December 2009

Describe your perfect day.
Laying at the beach on a summer day with Elise, a good book, and a tan so I don't have to worry about burning. Then to Ruth's Chris for a porter house afterward.

If you only had time to watch one tv show a week, which would you choose?
Amazing Race
(Me too!)

What's something people would be surprised to know about you?
I am not a big fan of guacamole.
(Hey, me neither! I thought I was the only one in the family.)

When you've had a really bad day what makes you feel better?
Coming home to a happy wifey.

Who's your celebrity crush?
Britney Spears pre-loss of virginity.
(It's true, I think the poster of her might still be up in his old bedroom at my parents' house.)

What's one of your favorite childhood memories?
Tending to my pumpkin patch.
(Jason I had totally forgotten about this. You did definitely love that pumpkin patch so much!)

What's one of your guiltiest pleasures?
Treats. I love dessert. Chocolate molten cake, creme brulee, ice cream, chocolate chip cookies...

If you could change one thing about the female race what would it be?
Don't need new clothes constantly. I wear the same clothes I wore years ago.
(It's not our fault! Styles change more for women than they do men.)

What's one of your favorite things about living in southern California?
The weather. Does anyone live here for another reason?

What part of being a dad are you most looking forward to?
Playing with the kiddies.

What book(s) are you currently reading?
Book of Mormon and CFA study materials.
(Remember when I said he's hard working? When I talked to him tonight he was studying....on his birthday!)

What's your favorite comfort food?
Grilled cheese and tomato soup. Elise makes the best.

If I gave you $100,000 with the stipulation that you couldn't save it or invest it, and had to spend it in within a week, what would you do with it?
Put in a new kitchen. Is that an investment? I would pay someone to finish all the work on our house and yard. It'll be a never ending project.

What is a piece of modern technology you could not live without?
Blackberry/smartphone.

Where is the most beautiful place you've ever been?
Maui/Cancun. Can't decide.

What book should be required reading for every American?
Atlas Shrugged.

You've been married for almost five years. Is there anything that still surprises you?
How happy Elise always is.

You've got two round trip tickets to anywhere in the world. Where do you go and who do you take?
I take Elise to Bora Bora.

If I could give you front row tickets to any concert, which one would you go to?
Coldplay. Saw them at Cricket in San Diego. It was amazing even though our seats weren't great.

What's one of your biggest pet peeves?
Rude drivers. The amount of time you save by going 80 instead of 70 when you're driving 20 miles is like one minute. Slow down and enjoy the ride.
(Another way Jason's gotten better with age. He didn't use to be such a bad driver. Just ask his friends, I'm pretty sure I got him grounded one time for complaining about his driving and they never let me live it down. Sorry again....)

If you had an hour all to yourself, how would you spend it?
Probably watching TV. I love Entourage. Guilty pleasure I guess and also something people may not know about me. Ari is so freaking funny.
(I totally didn't know that, and have now added the first season to my Neflix que.)

What three material possessions do you value most?
I really don't have anything I guess. My house.

What are you looking forward to?
Being done with the CFA once and for all.

What are three things on your bucket list?
Machu Pichu, run a marathon, African safari.
(I will do the marathon and safari with you.)

Who is someone who has changed or shaped your life for the better?
Elise

What piece of advice would you give to your younger self?
Slow down and enjoy the ride.

What do you know to be absolutely positively true?
*I love my wife. I know not just because I know, but because Elise woke up to me talking in my sleep saying, "I work so hard because I love that girl so much." You can't lie when you're asleep.
(See what I mean???)

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Meet my BFFs: Rebecca

Steve and Rebecca (+ baby bump!) this year on her birthday in Palm Springs (at the top of the mountain, hence the coat.)

Happy (belated! :( ) birthday Rebecca! I can't put into words what a jerk I feel like that this is two days late. A combo of temperamental internet, poor planning, and committing myself to too many other things that kept me away from the computer are to blame.

One thing I can tell you about my sister is that she'd never be writing a paragraph like this one, because she is one of the most organized, punctual people I know. Even being a mom of two (soon to be three!) she's just got it together. I don't want to make anyone feel bad, but she's really one of the best mothers I know. She is blessed to be at home with the kids and really makes the most of it. They're always going to museums, the beach, play dates, the pool, etc etc etc. Her kids are well behaved, happy, and well mannered.

She is the kind of person who you can just count on. She will never commit to something and then not follow through. She is honest, fair, and has no guile. She would never even consider doing something that would cheat anyone out of anything. She stands up for what's right, makes her home a place where the Spirit always resides, and welcomes everyone. She is easy to please, easy going, and happy to just be with her family. She's unpretentious, patient, and just plain good. She's real. She has her priorities in order and has her head on straight. I can't even tell you how many times when talking about my sister to friends or other family I've simply said, "She's just got it together." There's no other way to put it.

I love you Rebecca, and hope you have had a wonderful birthday week. Thank you for your constant example which makes me want to be better. Thank you for raising such wonderful kids who bring me happiness I've never known.

And to anyone else who's reading this, I'd link her blog but she's private, so feel free to leave your happy birthday messages on my blog for her to see!

Ryan and Megan this year visiting the flower fields in Carlsbad.

An oldie but goodie. My mom, Rebecca, and me celebrating her birthday in 2006 at my grandparents' in Rexburg.

Describe your perfect day.
Sleep in, perfect weather, uncrowded Disney Land with the family, everyone is happy, kids in bed early, hang out with Steve.

If you only had time to watch one tv show a week, which would you choose?
LOST

What's something people would be surprised to know about you?
I'm pretty much an open book, so I'm not sure???

When you've had a really bad day what makes you feel better?
Steve coming home from work!

Who's your celebrity crush?
Has always been Tom Cruise (since Top Gun.) Brad Pitt is up there too though.

What's one of your favorite childhood memories?
Family vacations and time with grandparents.

What's one of your guiltiest pleasures?
Chocolate.

If you could change one thing about the male race what would it be?
??? I asked Steve if he could think of something that I have complained about and he said, "Make them less hairy." Haha, Steve barely has any hair, but he knows that was an issue with people I dated in the past.

What's one of your favorite things about living in southern California?
The weather!

What's your favorite part of being a mom?
Watching the kids discover and accomplish new things.

What book(s) are you currently reading?
Just my scriptures.

What's your favorite comfort food?
Sugar and bread.

If I gave you $100,000 with the stipulation that you couldn't save it or invest it, and had to spend it within a week, what would you do with it?
Maybe buy two new cars, since we have had car problems with both lately, a big TV and entertainment center/home theater, give some to humanitarian aid or family/friends in need.

What is a piece of modern technology you could not live without?
Cell phone, computer.

Where is the most beautiful place you've ever been?
Maui.

What book should be required reading for every American?
I know it sounds cliche, but the Book of Mormon.

You've been married for almost nine years. Is there anything that still surprises you?
Yes, but I can't say it out loud. :)
You're killing me! Maybe you should email me your answer. :)

You've got two round trip tickets to anywhere in the world. Where do you go and who do you take?
Europe and Steve.

If I could give you front row tickets to any concert, which one would you go to?
U2

What's one of your biggest pet peeves?
Flaky, lazy people.

If you had an hour all to yourself, how would you spend it?
I might relax or I might clean/organize the house, or I might run errands, or I might make some phone calls...the possibilities are endless!

What three material possessions do you value most?
Home, cars, cell phone.

What are you looking forward to?
I'm always looking forward to something, but try to enjoy the moment too. Kids grow up way too fast!

What are three things on your "bucket list"?
Traveling the world (aren't we all?), serving a mission with Steve, watching grand kids grow.

Who is someone who has changed or shaped your life for the better?
Steve, my kids, Ricks College, my parents/grandparents, and Carole Brown.

What piece of advice would you give to your younger self?
Study harder in school.

What do you know to be absolutely positively true?
The Gospel

Monday, April 26, 2010

What do Metallica and Mariano Rivera have in common?


They help me get through the last five minutes of a long or hard run. I'm sure I've blogged about it before, but for those of you who don't know Mo, he's arguably the best closer of all time. Metallica's Enter Sandman blasts from the speakers when Girardi makes the call to the bull pen to come finish up the game. As soon as those beginning strums of the guitar start playing the crowd. goes. insane. The energy is incredible and indescribable. Usually when I'm at the game I'm jumping up and down and screaming and singing along so loud I get light headed. (Is that weird?) Anyway, so when I hear this song randomly come on while I'm walking down the street I get really pumped and really excited, and usually a big smile comes on my face. I can't help it. So naturally, this is my fail proof song that helps me finish out a run. Sort of ironic.

Also...
  • I think I may have this year's core leave figured out. I'm not positive, but pretty sure. It's hard to commit (weird) but I think I'm excited about it. (BTW, I just read through all the comments left on that post, and they made me feel really good, even over a year later. Thanks. :) )
  • My tub sucks. Seriously. I think it needs to be snaked. (Is that the right word?) Well, I mean, I know it does. I drano it probably once a month but after about two weeks the water doesn't drain, which means it needs to be cleaned more frequently, which is annoying. And even when it is clean, it's like a freaking slip and slide. No joke. I even bought some of those sticky no-slip stickers and put them on the tub but they don't do that much. RRRRR.
  • I have to admit, despite some rain (April showers.....I know) we've had a pleasant, and pretty long spring. Usually if you blink you can miss spring, and sometimes even fall, in New York. They really are the best seasons here, and I've really been enjoying them.
  • I had the perfect weekend last weekend of fun, productivity, and relaxation. It was...perfect.
  • I need to blog Dallas, I know. I need to blog a lot of things. (Rio, you are haunting me!)
  • Speaking of haunting, last night we were at my friend's hanging out and the discussion of crack came up. Yes, "crack is whack" crack. The conversation went on and one of the girls there told a story about how she recently was b* slapped by this lady strung out on crack. Slapped!!! And it was on her own street, none the less. I told her she needs to move. So then we kept talking about crack and crack whores and crack dealers, etc etc etc, and then last night I dreamt I was addicted to crack. I woke up relieved.
  • Does anyone watch Parenthood? I'd thought it looked pretty funny and a guy at work was telling me how good it is so this weekend I watched a few episodes. Love. Love. It's really good. Really funny, touching, and makes me appreciate parents. And Lorelai Gilmore's in it so how could you not want to watch? It's not a family show though, so, there's your warning.
  • I was just in my shower singing happily along to a Madonna mix when Justify My Love came one. That has seriously got to be her worst song ever. It has absolutely no business being on The Immaculate Collection.
  • I went to a plastic surgeon's office today and left frustrated and annoyed. I'm considering new boobs. Kidding. (For now.) I've been toying with the idea of having my birth mark removed, just cuz. I'm not particularly insecure about it, but have just wondered if it was time to have it done. Well, I can tell you, it's not. I schlepped in the rain 41 blocks north (on the bus) just to see (one of New York Magazine's best rated) for less than 5 minutes (I'm not kidding) and have him tell me it's basically a bad idea. He can get rid of it one way, and it might come back. Or he can get rid of it another (way more expensive) way, and it'll leave a nasty scar. Awesome. I guess I'll keep the character. Oh yeah, and those few minutes cost me one hundred and fifty smackers. Due before leaving the office. Wonderful.
  • Oh!! So SO excited! Aim Brow got engaged this weekend. Hurray! I hear Jerry is a real jem.
  • Last night two of my girls I visit teach and my companion came over for dinner. I made my mom's yuuuuuummy chicken poppy seed salad and it was a hit. And sooooo delish. So delish in fact that I even had leftovers tonight. (I almost never eat leftovers.)
  • Have I mentioned my sister's having a boy?
  • It's a small small world. Melissa and her friend Arin are visiting New York right now. Love Mel and Arin's a doll. I'm glad Arin and I could finally meet because we know all the same people. Including her missionary. Who I babysat. I'm ancient. Actually, I'm ancient because a kid I babysat several times has been married for a couple years now. Weird.
  • I was in the best mood today at work which is so weird because, A-It's Monday, B-It was raining, C-I was at work, and D-I didn't get much sleep. It was a really good work day though. Until I went to the nasty doctor. Boo.
  • I had a few hours to myself which were nice, but the combo of the bad mood and solitude made me a little lonesome. A perfect recipe for the gym. Funny how I came home singing aloud. Working out really does make you happier.
  • And speaking of that, whyyyyyyyy am I such a better runner when I'm sad? I guess if I ever decide to train for a marathon I'll have to arrange it to coincide with another nasty breakup. Although, that can't really happen again because God and I have a deal.
  • Does anyone watch Say Yes to the Dress? I stumbled upon it this weekend and I'm addicted. Some of these brides and their mothers/girlfriends/future mothers-in-law/entourage make me want to cringe. Honestly it's so awkward. Nadia, if you were watching you'd have to leave the room or change the channel. And sometimes I wish I were there with them so I could scream, "Nooooo! That is NOT the dress for you!" I always wonder how their mother's can act like it's the best dress ever. Thankfully I have a mom who wouldn't let me leave the house wearing something so unflattering.

Alright, I just let out a huge sigh. I guess that means this post is done and it's time for bed.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

A good day

  • It's Assistant's Day. I don't really expect anything because, well, it's a made up holiday, and I feel like, for the most part, I'm treated pretty well and shown appreciation every day. However, I do work for some great people, and have an exceptional boss. It was a very nice Assistant Day, and actually, the whole week has been/will be nice. I love my job.
  • I had to explain to my mom over the phone what a "that's what she said" joke is. I laughed really hard trying to explain it. It seems really easy, but have you tried it? I laughed so hard I did the silent wheezing grandpa laugh.
  • I got a mani pedi.
  • I enjoyed a quiet apartment.
  • I enjoyed all my roommates being home at once and sitting around chatting in the living room. It's rare that all four of us are home and awake.
  • The doormen didn't have to go on strike!
  • I'm being brought into the loop on more projects and discussions at work.
  • I got a text from one of my favorite old coworkers. I miss him.
  • I made a cute guy interviewing loosen up. It's his fourth time coming in and he's always been so serious and uptight.
  • I caught up on some correspondence.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Things that made me laugh out loud today

  • The awkward IT guy making a "that's what she said joke" to the cool guy who sits next to me.
  • Talking to the boss man after he'd just spent 6 hours in a bar in Hong Kong. Laughed out loud, multiple times.
  • The expletive followed by "moron", blatantly said by one of the traders, about another trader, without remorse or shame.
  • Nat, spilling water on her desk, and then herself. At least one of us spills on ourselves daily.
  • Maria, laughing at me, because I kept gasping while we watched the season finale of Damages.
  • A random guy in the park who started talking to me as I walked by, telling me he's not stupid enough to say anything to me because I'm out of his league, and he's not as stupid as those corporate guys who wouldn't realize that. I couldn't do anything but laugh, because it was so random that this guy was telling me this (and he didn't appear crazy) and kept talking to me as I walked a different direction and couldn't stop laughing out loud.
  • Glee. I'm not a regular watcher but Kamari (my friend! So proud!) was on tonight's episode and there were a few lines that made me laugh pretty hard.
  • My roommates. Always. Can't even remember the "going to bed" conversation that we had tonight, but I had to stop a minute while I was locking the door because I was laughing too hard. These are times I'll miss when I don't hate roommates.