Monday, December 14, 2009

babies - the movie

This may be the only documentary I've ever been dying to see. The trailer is beautiful!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

where are you Christmas?

You may or may not know that The Grinch (Jim Carrey version) is my favorite Christmas movie. I'm not really sure why, other than it's complete quotable-ness.

It feels pretty appropriate this season, as I've been feeling sort of Grinch-ish. I've gotten super frustrated in moments as time speeds toward the big day.

I am completely over the non-stop Christmas music and was the day after Thanksgiving. I love a few carols here and there - but come on - throw something else in the mix!

I got stuck in Christmas parade traffic one day after work last week and wanted to scream! Especially after a man who was lined up to be in the parade started yelling obscenities at me (ok, well it was just one minor obsenity, but you get the picture) for going the wrong way (there was no right way marked!!!!).

And the pressure to have a perfect holiday season is so intense! I feel like I should be buying more gifts, or going to more holiday parties, or putting up more decorations, or eating more insanely bad for me foods.

It's just all so....superfluous (thank you Cindy Lou Who).

And here's the thing - I love Christmas. I love decorating, and baking, and holiday partying, and gift buying. Seriously - I love the rush I get when I find the perfect present for someone I love. Last night I finalized my wrapping plans (which no one else cares about). I've picked my paper, ribbon and tags and last night I wrapped my first present to see what it all looked like together. I was so excited you would have thought I solved the world's hunger problems!

But the excess is getting in the way.

Luckily I have a great husband who is a pretty good preacher and preached a sermon just for me on Sunday (don't tell him I said that). It was the second Sunday in Advent and the message was about preparing the way of the Lord. In addition to being a great sermon-giver, he is a pretty song-picker. One of the hymns we sang on Sunday was Take Time to Be Holy. Every line of the song felt like it was written solely for me in this season. These two are my favorites.

Take time to be holy, the world rushes on;
Spend much time in secret, with Jesus alone.

Take time to be holy, be calm in they soul,
Each thought and each motive beneath His control.

In the moments of frustration over the next couple of weeks, I hope this gets stuck in my head. (as much as I have loved being introduced to this holiday classic)

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

i am thankful for

**So I'm a little late on this but I ran out of time before Thanksgiving...

{a wonderful husband who loves me and puts up with my craziness}

{beautiful kids in my life that give me the opportunity to love them while leaving all the hard stuff to their parents}


{the opportunity to spend time with family and friends}

{good friends who I can count on for good times and comforting words}

{google reader}

{the birth of Christ}

{a job that I love and the wonderful students I get to work with every day}

{a car with a CD player so I can escape the non-stop Christmas music}

{dark chocolate}




Wednesday, November 18, 2009

the west coast

Here it is - all you ever wanted to know about our vacation! It won't hurt my feelings if you just look at the pictures!

We started in Anaheim for my conference. I love NODA and loved seeing my NODA friends! I also learned a lot and have many thoughts and programs to follow up on in the next few months. While I was conferencing, John explored a little on his own. Many of his activities were centered around this guy:

We did find some time to go to Disneyland! But here's the sad part. I've been to Disneyworld one time and the Small World ride was broken. It's not that I'm a huge fan of the song, but it's a pretty landmark attraction, right? So the one thing I wanted to do at Disneyland was ride Small World....and it was closed!!! Here I am looking sad...

Monday was a legendary day! It started with conference stuff then John and I took a lunch break at Huntington Beach. We saw lots of seagulls and surfers.

My coworker Jenn has a friend from college who is a writer for How I Met Your Mother! So, after our conference responsibilities were over, we went to visit the set! It was so much fun and so interesting to be standing on the set that we watch on TV every week. Here are a few pictures:

Clockwise from top left: a childhood picture of Neil Patrick Harris that was taped to one of the monitors; John and me in the corner booth at MacLaren's; John and me on the front steps of Ted's apartment building; part of Ted's living room; John, Jenn and me in Ted's classroom

From the studio lot we took off driving around Hollywood. Were just kinda wondering and trying to figure out where to have dinner. Well, we were on Sunset Blvd. stopped at a red light. I looked to my right and noticed Bentley in the adjacent lane. I kinda looked at the car, then at the driver, then thought "I wonder who's he's driving". I look in the back seat....and it's John Travolta and Kelly Preston!!! The first words out of my mouth were, "S*@#!!!! That's John Travolta!" I was trying to be cool so I didn't take any pictures :(. We were in a left turn lane and had to turn, but as we were processing what had just happened, we realized that he was probably in town for the premier of his new movie, Old Dogs. So, we found our way to Hollywood Blvd., parked the car and went to hang out with the paparazzi and screaming fans! It was stupid fun and we saw a slew of famous folk.
Clockwise from top left: John Travolta's car we saw as we were leaving the premier; a red carpet pic (it's kinda blurry but there's John, right there in the middle); Tom Hanks in the Disney ice cream shop next door; the whole cast taking pictures in the Disney ice cream shop (including John, Tom, Kelly, Rita Wilson, Robin Williams, Dax Sheppard, Seth Green, Lori Loughlin, etc.)

That was lots of fun and we followed it up by driving up into the Hollywood Hills to the foot of the Hollywood sign. Great day!

The results of John trying to get a picture of John Travolta when he came approximately 3 feet from us. Fail. But he tried.

Tuesday the conference ended then I had a marathon meeting. We made a pit stop at the Disney store to pick up gifts for the kiddos then headed out of town. We did stop for dinner at In 'N Out and dessert at Pinkberry (one of my favorite meals of the trip...definitely the cheapest!).

Wednesday morning started our 2-day drive up the Pacific Coast Hwy. We saw some amazing scenery and really enjoyed just being together and not around many more people.

clockwise from top left: the view from our motel (yes, motel) Wednesday morning; elephant seals on the beach in San Simeon; John and me at sunset in San Simeon

the sunset in San Simeon

clockwise from top left: the view from our lodge on Thursday morning; John enjoying the view (one of the reasons I love him, it's not posed, he's just taking in the moment while waiting for me to get ready!); the view from breakfast

clockwise from top left: view from the road; another view from the road; Bixby Bridge; John finally seeing a giant Redwood (I realize it looks like he is relieving himself...he's not...I promise)

McWay Falls Overlook at Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park

Pfeiffer Beach in Big Sur

We got in to San Francisco early Thursday evening. I really liked the hotel we stayed at there, Carriage Inn. It was actually pretty cheap and super cute. We loved San Francisco! I didn't realize how absolutely hilly it is. Tons of fun!

the Carriage Inn

clockwise from top left: flag in the Castro; Golden Gate Bridge from a lookout; driving across the Golden Gate Bridge

clockwise from top left: The Castro Theatre (one of the upcoming shows was a Sound of Music Sing-a-long!!); Alcatraz from Fisherman's Wharf; Mission Dolores (oldest building in San Fran); The Painted Ladies from the opening credits of Full House (where we got a flat tire...)

flowers at the Conservatory of Flowers in Golden Gate park

I've been cyber drooling over these for at least a year but they are only in LA and San Francisco (this brand at least; macarons are French so there are plenty there!). Paulette's was on my must visit list. We went on Friday afternoon (after changing the flat tire) and I bought a box of 6. When their amazingness was confirmed we decided to go back Saturday morning and this is my box of 12 I got to bring back. The purple (violet cassis) were our favorites and the orange (passion fruit) were also pretty yummy.

the most deliciousness ever!

So that was it! We had a great time and I am so thankful we had the opportunity to travel. It really makes me want to start planning our next vacation! If you made it all the way to the end, leave a comment so I know my typing wasn't in vain!

p.s. the nephew has a name

you can call him Zeke


My nephew is here! We don't have an official name yet, but I'm still holding out hope for Hash (last name Brown....get it?)

Here's his mug...

Isn't he beautiful?!? Too freakin' cute.

I'm working on a vacation post....but I have too much real work to do!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

going away

John and I leave tomorrow for a western adventure! Does that sound exciting and dramatic? I hope so!

Tomorrow night we will be in Atlanta (I know...not western) for In the Heights! I've been looking forward to this for a while! Here is one of my favorite songs.

And then Saturday we will fly to Anaheim to the happiest place on Earth! No, not Disneyland...NODA! This is the conference for the professional association I belong to - National Orientation Directors Association. I mean, it is actually at Disneyland, which I'm super excited about, but I'm also pretty excited about NODA. It's a great chance to see old friends, meet new friends, and get some great new ideas for orientation!

Another thing I'm super excited I will wait to talk about until I get back. But here's a hint:

image from

I realize that just looks like a bar - but it's not. I promise.

When the conference ends on Tuesday, John and I will drive up Hwy 1 to San Francisco. We'll fly back, exhausted, on Saturday. I'm super excited and can't wait to get away. Unfortunately, a lot of work needs to be done in the short time between now and then. Better get to it!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

on my mind

This video made the rounds on facebook back in September and it's been on my mind since. It blows my mind that this policy is still in place.

If I had more time, I would have more to say. Maybe another day...

Thursday, October 29, 2009


I love this series from Cade Martin. Makes me want to be a ballerina. In another life maybe.

I would put the second one on my wall.

See more of his photos here.

Friday, October 23, 2009

yes I am

I feel like this book was written for me. I have been called neurotic on more than one occasion.

Those aren't my issues - but these are:

{I eat my m&m's by color - always. Green, orange and yellow first. Then red. Then blue and brown. But I save a few red to eat with my last blue's.}

{I don't like to eat outside because I have to wear sunglasses - but then I can't figure out whether to look through the lens or under them.}

{When I eat pop tarts I don't toast them - but instead microwave them for first 15 seconds and then 7. Every time.}

I'm sure there are more. Some of you may have been on the crazy end of them...

Thursday, October 22, 2009


I'm back on the independently wealthy kick. This is what I would buy today...

jacket, tee, pants, flats, headband (I cheated, it's from Anthropologie)

Monday, October 19, 2009

Sweet Caroline

on Glee this week!!

Watch the second sneak peek. I couldn't get the embed to work so the link will have to do. I'm loving this show!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Class of '99

This weekend was my 10 year high school reunion. I was unsure of what to expect but ended up having a great time! For me, it was the perfect balance of spending quality time with my best friends who I miss a lot and catching up with people who I haven't seen in a long time (some in 10 years!). By the way - that's a Red Raider. Whatever that is.

I got to see all of my best friends from high school on Saturday except for one. We missed you Holli! Clarissa is missing from this picture too but I got to see her and her beautiful Zoey.

Gina, Ella & Karyn

And after the reunion I got to spend some QT with my cousins. We definitely had some laughs!

Katie, Juli & Ella

And John was there. He was my trophy husband (and probably knew as many people there as I did) (surprising because he didn't go to school with me).

It does not seem like it's been 10 years. In some ways my life is nowhere near what I expected it to be. But in others it is exactly like I pictured it. I've done a lot in 10 years, but honestly the thoughts leading up to this weekend made me realize how much further I could be pushing my life. I could be doing more; for myself and for others.

Now to turn thoughts into action...

Friday, October 9, 2009


I have a problem with accessories. I don't wear any! Coco Chanel's advice was always take one thing off before you leave the house. But honestly, I think I need to reverse that. I think I'll try to put one accessory on before I leave the house.

Can I start with these please?

found on oh joy!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


The afternoon is creeping by because I'm ready to go home and watch Oprah. Which is weird for me. Not that I dislike Oprah. I just don't normally pine for her.

But today is special.

Stephanie was on Oprah today and I can't wait to watch! I have laughed and cried many times reading her blog. Mostly I think about her life and the way she makes me want to live better.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Baby Shower

My mom and sister-in-law and I hosted a baby shower yesterday for my other sister-in-law. It was lots of fun and turned out great! They haven't decided on a name yet, but when they first told us they were pregnant I started calling him Hash (because his last name is Brown....get it....Hash Brown...). That has stuck pretty well so that might as well be his name now!

Yummy cupcakes!

Food & Decorations

The proud parents writing a note to Baby Hash!


Nana and Aunt Birdie

My favorite kiddos - Tucker & Sarah

My cousins and the mom-to-be

Monday, September 28, 2009

On Repeat

These are some of the songs I'm loving right now. Slightly eclectic. That's me.

And Rusted Root is worth a trip to You Tube to see the actual video.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


I love award shows! My favorite part is of course the fashion followed closely by the musical numbers depending on who is hosting. Neil Patrick Harris, yes please!

I always love looking at the best and worst dressed lists the day after the big shows. So, I thought I would compile my own.


Kristen Chenoweth in Zuhair Murad
How cute is she?!

Lindsay Price
I haven't seen her a lot on a lot of lists (I guess because she's not actually on tv right now...) but when I saw this picture she immediately became my favorite!

Perrey Reeves in Naeem Kahn
This isn't the best picture but she was stunning on the red carpet.


Padma Lakshmi in Badgley Mischka
I love Padma, but I do not love this dress. It looks a little cheap and the hair is tragic.

Sarah Silverman
This is actually a really good picture of her in this dress. I was trying to be nice. Because in other pictures....she looks rough. Probably the least flattering dress of the night.

Can't wait for the Golden Globes in January!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Some say I am a dreamer

Any time I have an opportunity to make a wish, it is almost always the same thing. I wish to be independently wealthy. Some days, I am aware of how selfish that sounds. I mean, really? I could wish for anything and I wish for that? But to make myself feel better, I justify. Because, if I had all the money I would ever need, I could do so much with my time! I could really give back and do the things that matter. Plus, I could throw my money wherever I wanted. I could help whoever I wanted!

And also, I could have my dream home. I think a lot about what that would look like. And my mind changes every day. So, instead of deciding on a dream home, I've settled on a dream designer. I have decided that I am in love with Sixx Design. And, if I was independently wealthy, they would design all of my homes and they would all be fabulous, and all of my millions left over would be used to help other people.

So, here is a compilation of what my homes would look like:

I think my favorite is the in-ground trampoline. I might just go dig a whole right now. Or maybe I will get John to dig it.

I have their book too, which is full of before and afters and great stories about their design process and amazing finds. I think my favorite is the NYC townhouse that features a rooftop basketball court that makes even me want to shoot some hoops!

Unfortunately my sister-in-law always reminds me that I am destined to earn what I have; which I suppose isn't so bad. I guess I will just keep dreaming!

I originally found Sixx and these pics on: Design Mom, oh happy day! and black*eiffel.