Monday, May 31, 2010

Memorial Day Weekend

What a fantastic weekend! We decided to pack up on Friday afternoon and head up to the mountains to do some camping on this glorious three day weekend. It was our first time out this year and it was a fantastic trip. Check out the view we had from our campsite.

On Saturday our friends Brianna and Rob came up to spend the day and night with us. We went on a beautiful hike and enjoyed the near-perfect weather as we headed up the mountain side.

On our way back to the campsite later that afternoon we ran into a hail storm. It was raining really hard when we jumped out of the car and made a dash for the tent - just in time for the rain to turn into hail! No good!

The forecast for the day was supposed to be sunny and hot and I was quite unhappy to be so cold and to not have packed enough warm clothing to keep my body temperature hot. We spent the rest of the afternoon under our canopy positioned over the picnic table playing Phase 10 with Brianna and Rob while Gromit took a nap in his camp chair (so he didn't get muddy laying on the ground).

It finally stopped hailing and raining and we were able to enjoy a nice dinner and s'mores complete with peanut butter - my favorite! It was so cold that night from all of the rain and hail that Gromit ebded up sleeping in my sleeping bag with me. He scooted all the way to the bottom and curled up next to me and stayed there all night. What a cutie!

On Sunday we all took a scenic drive and even took a little walk on the hunt to see a moose, but ended up unsuccessful. Oh well, maybe we'll find one next time.

After Brianna and Rob left Dave and I walked around our camp ground and I had a little too much fun taking pictures and playing with the macro setting on my camera. I'll spare you from posting all of the 222 pictures I took on this trip and just show you a couple of my favorites.

We woke up this morning and packed everything up and headed home. I truly love going camping, but there's nothing like a hot shower and a flushing toilet to come home to.

I hope everyone had as great of a weekend as I did. Happy Memorial Day!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Baby Tom-ato

Good news! Tom the tomato plant has finally begun to grow some tomatoes! Dave has really been taking care of that plant and I'm so glad his hard work is paying off.

Right now there are three baby tomatoes and a few more flowers waiting to turn into fruit. We can't wait until they get bigger in the coming weeks and we can pick one off and eat it. Yum!

Monday, May 24, 2010

New beginnings

Today was my first day at my new job and I am so excited! Here are just a few highlights of what made it so great:
  • I was given an office - an actual office - with four walls, a door and a window that looks into the lobby
  • My office has a desk, two lamps, a bookcase and two chairs - there's so much room!
  • Direct deposit - no more paper checks!
  • A really caring and open boss
  • Being invited to lunch with some of my new co-workers
  • Having my calendar quickly fill up with meetings (hey, I love meetings and getting to know new people)
  • Starting to plan new awareness and fundraising events
  • Finding out that Thursdays are Spanish lesson days where anyone interested can join in learning Spanish with Rosetta Stone software
The list goes on and on. I am so excited to get things organized and arranged so that I can do the best job possible. I am so excited to be in this new position and can't wait for all of the wonderful things that lay ahead of me.

And I want to thank my loving and supportive husband who took me shopping for office decorations tonight at 9:30. What a guy!

Bring on tomorrow, I'm so ready!

Thursday, May 20, 2010


I gave these to my co-workers on my last day at the first "real job" I ever had.

Thank you to everyone who I have worked with over the last three years, eight months and ten days. You have all made an impact on my life and I will never forget you and the laughs we shared.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Starting a new chapter

I have always had a passion for nonprofit organizations and helping those who couldn't help themselves and it was my goal to work for one in some sort of PR capacity once I graduated form college. Imagine my surprise when my very first job was working as the event/volunteer coordinator for a nonprofit organization.

It was a new position in the organization and I was told that I could set the bar for what the position would be. Being who I am, I wanted to set the bar high and took it as a personal challenge to do the very best work that I could to benefit the organization and the people it served. I worked hard, revamped the volunteer program, began to take on new tasks such as writing the newsletter, starting MySpace, Twitter and Facebook accounts for the organization, writing press releases, editing the website, etc. and eventually every activity I ended up trying out became part of my job. The volunteer program grew, I was doing an array of new job duties and eventually I became so busy that it was decided to split my position into two. I became the event/marketing manager (another brand new position) and a separate volunteer coordinator was hired. I think I achieved my goal in setting the bar pretty high.

I have seen and experienced a lot over the past four years at that organization. I've been there for the good days and the bad days, I was given the ability to follow through on a few of my crazy event ideas, I've seen a total of four supervisors come in and out of the position (some good to work with some more frustrating to work with), I've grown my skills and abilities, I've been pushed to my emotional limits, I've met some fantastic and interesting people, I've learned a lot about business, I've seen co-workers go through hard times, I had some fun and I've also had some of the most trying times of my life.

But it's time for a change.

I've accepted a position as volunteer/special event coordinator at another nonprofit organization - another new position where I once again am challenged to set the bar high. My first day will be May 24th. While it is sad and kind of scary to leave behind the job and organization I've known for nearly four years, the only job I've had since I graduated from college, I am excited and re-energized by the opportunity that lies ahead of me.

I will be supporting another cause close to my heart, the staff members there are overwhelmingly warm and welcoming, I will get to meet new people, I will get to implement some new fundraising ideas, I can grow my marketing, PR and event planning skills, I will get to be working closer to home, I may get to eat lunch with my husband every once in a while, I can go home and see Gromit at lunch and I have an opportunity to help a new group of people in need.

So, with God's help and the support of my family and friends I am embarking on this new journey; a new chapter in my professional career and personal development. Ready or not, here I come!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Oh! The Places You'll Go - by Dr. Seuss

Today is your day.
You’re off to Great Places!
You’re off and away!

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go.

You’ll look up and down streets. Look’em over with care. About some you will say, “I don’t choose to go there.” With your head full of brains and your shoes full of feet, you’re too smart to go down a not-so-good street.

And you may not find any you’ll want to go down. In that case, of course, you’ll head straight out of town. It’s opener there in the wide open air.

Out there things can happen and frequently do to people as brainy and footsy as you.

And when things start to happen, don’t worry. Don’t stew. Just go right along. You’ll start happening too.

Oh! The Places You’ll Go!

You’ll be on your way up!
You’ll be seeing great sights!
You’ll join the high fliers who soar to high heights.

You won’t lag behind, because you’ll have the speed. You’ll pass the whole gang and you’ll soon take the lead. Wherever you fly, you’ll be best of the best. Wherever you go, you will top all the rest.

Except when you don’t.
Because, sometimes, you won’t.

I’m sorry to say so but, sadly, it’s true that Bang-ups and Hang-ups can happen to you.

You can get all hung up in a prickle-ly perch. And your gang will fly on. You’ll be left in a Lurch.

You’ll come down from the Lurch with an unpleasant bump. And the chances are, then, that you’ll be in a Slump.

And when you’re in a Slump, you’re not in for much fun. Un-slumping yourself is not easily done.

You will come to a place where the streets are not marked. Some windows are lighted. But mostly they’re darked. A place you could sprain both your elbow and chin! Do you dare to stay out? Do you dare to go in? How much can you lose? How much can you win?

And if you go in, should you turn left or right…or right-and-three-quarters? Or, maybe, not quite? Or go around back and sneak in from behind? Simple it’s not, I’m afraid you will find, for a mind-maker-upper to make up his mind.

You can get so confused that you’ll start in to race down long wiggled roads at a break-necking pace and grind on for miles across weirdish wild space, headed, I fear, toward a most useless place.

The Waiting Place…for people just waiting.

Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come, or a plane to go or the mail to come, or the rain to go or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow or waiting around for a Yes or No or waiting for their hair to grow. Everyone is just waiting.

Waiting for the fish to bite or waiting for wind to fly a kite or waiting around for Friday night or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake or a pot to boil, or a Better Break or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants or a wig with curls, or Another Chance. Everyone is just waiting.

No! That’s not for you!
Somehow you’ll escape all that waiting and staying. You’ll find the bright places where Boom Bands are playing. With banner flip-flapping, once more you’ll ride high! Ready for anything under the sky. Ready because you’re that kind of a guy!

Oh, the places you’ll go! There is fun to be done! There are points to be scored. There are games to be won. And the magical things you can do with that ball will make you the winning-est winner of all. Fame! You’ll be famous as famous can be, with the whole wide world watching you win on TV.

Except when they don’t. Because, sometimes, they won’t.

I’m afraid that some times you’ll play lonely games too. Games you can’t win ‘cause you’ll play against you.

All Alone!
Whether you like it or not, Alone will be something you’ll be quite a lot.

And when you’re alone, there’s a very good chance you’ll meet things that scare you right out of your pants. There are some, down the road between hither and yon, that can scare you so much you won’t want to go on.

But on you will go though the weather be foul. On you will go though your enemies prowl. On you will go though the Hakken-Kraks howl. Onward up many a frightening creek, though your arms may get sore and your sneakers may leak. On and on you will hike. And I know you’ll hike far and face up to your problems whatever they are.

You’ll get mixed up, of course, as you already know. You’ll get mixed up with many strange birds as you go. So be sure when you step. Step with care and great tact and remember that Life’s a Great Balancing Act. Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. And never mix up your right foot with your left.

And will you succeed?
Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and ¾ percent guaranteed.)

Kid, you’ll move mountains!
So…be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray or Mordecai Ale Van Allen O’Shea, you’re off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting.
So…get on your way!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Meet Tom

Meet our Topsy Turvy tomato plant, affectionately nicknamed Tom. This is Dave's new venture for the growing season.

Green thumbs do not run in my family and every time I have tried to grow flowers in hanging planters on our balcony I have failed miserably. My plants either dry out, drown, freeze or are otherwise eaten by bugs. With Dave in charge now we hope to have some tasty tomatoes to eat all season long. Stay tuned to see how this turns out!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Bangs, birthdays and bikes

It has been a crazy busy weekend. But I've had an amazing time!

About a week ago I started thinking about changing my hair style. It was just long - I didn't have any layers or tapering or anything - and I was getting bored with it. I took a quick Facebook poll and decided to have bangs cut into my hair. Once the decision was made I quickly made the appointment so that I couldn't change my mind. I went in on Friday, held my breath and let the stylist work her magic. Viola! Bangs! I'm still getting used to them but I do really like them. The picture is a little grainy because it was taken with my phone, but you get the idea.

Saturday was my 26th birthday and it made me realize that I am one spoiled girl. So many family and friends called, texted and wrote on my Facebook wall with sweet birthday wishes - it made me so grateful for all of the wonderful people in my life. What a lucky (and humbled) girl I am to have so many people thinking about me on my special day! That night we went out to dinner at a Hibachi restaurant to celebrate both mine and Dave's birthdays (his birthday was last Saturday and we had a special dinner. We like to celebrate our collective birthdays with all of our friends on the same night). Here's a picture of everyone who was able to go to dinner with us that night.

After dinner Dave, Trisha, Jessy and I headed out to enjoy a few drinks. All in all we had a great night and it was really fun to catch up with some of our friends who we don't get to hang out with all that much with our busy schedules. It was a great birthday!

On Sunday morning I had to work at my organization's Poker Run (motorcyclists riding together from stop to stop picking up a playing card at each stop and gathering at the end to see who has the best poker hand). I handed out cards, took pictures of all the motorcycles and even got a ride on our executive director's trike! It was fun, but really scary to be traveling at 65 mph down the highway with nothing but a helmet, jeans, flip flops and windbreaker keeping me from the elements and the ground below. I survived!

Well, it was a busy but awesome weekend. Now, bring on the rest of this week!