Sunday, July 24, 2011

Observations On a Plane

I guess I should start with getting a pat-down as I came through security. I went through the new fangled machine. The rivets and bling on my jeans, the sequins on my t-shirt and bra apparently warranted a pat-down. So TSA got to feel up my T, S, and A. (S being for stomach.) I feel like we should of at least introduced ourselves, hugged it out, but something more than swiping my hands for explosives.

Now, onto my flight:

I have perplexing row mates on my flight to Minneapolis. First, it's a little boy and an adult man. They look alike, but I'm not sure how they're related - brothers, cousins, father/son. I can't tell their relationship because the only words they've spoken were their drink orders to the flight attendant.

They both spent the time on the ramp and in flight sitting with arms crossed, staring forward. The shade on the window was drawn by the time I took the aisle seat.

It wasn't until I took out my iPod, well after the 10,000 feet announcement, that the little boy took out his iPod. When the drinks were served, he was excited to have cookies.

What really struck me, after surmising perhaps there's a fear of flight, was when the adult opened the shade to peer out, the boy lit up and strained to see out the window. There was something in his body language that he was excited to see out the window.

Overall, the whole situation is odd. I really want to know how they are related and what their deal is. It's borderline creepy.

On another front, I'm sitting across from a 'tween hipster who has her leggings tucked into her white socks and floral print tennis that clash horribly with her floral print top. I can't handle the hipster movement.

Also, I'm sitting behind a satanic sounding cougher who has also carried aboard a full size afghan. Apparently, she's trying to hold back another demonic cold.

And one last thing: I would really appreciate of you didn't blatantly disregard the carry-on policy, fellow travelers. I get it. You have a purse, a laptop, a rollaboard. But if you put the purse and laptop under your seat, I take no issue with your rollaboard in the overhead. However, I take HUGE issue when two of you have TWO backpacks PLUS a rollaboard EACH in the BULKHEAD. In the age where almost every airline charges for checked baggage, I get that you're being thrifty. However, you need to realize that we all have to share the space, so don't be a doucher and take up more than your fair share. Take advantage of the free gate check to your destination. Buck up and pay to check your bag. Or here's a novel idea: don't pack so much.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Packing Light

It seems that I should really consider what "light" means. I'm proud that I have managed a carry-on and briefcase for my week-long trip to Arizona for work. I have managed to cram a week's worth of work clothes and after-work (read: shorts and t-shirts) clothes, five pairs of shoes, toiletries, cardigans, and workout clothes. Planning on the eventual sweat that happens in 105 degree desert heat, I clearly had to plan that I might not want to stretch the wears between laundry. (Aside from gym clothes. I feel bad for whomever is next to me in the hotel gym.)

Speaking of laundry, I'm proud that I have enough summer clothes for two weeks in super hot climates without having to do laundry. I would naturally just pack one suitcase and take it with me from Arizona to Fripp Island, but I don't have time nor the desire to do laundry wherever I might be able to for both trips. Whatever.

As for my trip to Fripp, I could probably pack in the same carry-on size luggage, but because I like to have options for beachwear as sometimes it's a dress situation, sometimes it's a short and tank situation. And sometimes it's a yoga pant situation. To be fair, even though I am using the largest of my three rolling bags, a third of that is going one-way with me. I will post more about why I have a third of my suitcase only going one-way, but that would give away surprises for my housemates!

But let's talk about this heat because I'm sure that no one has talked, tweeted, blogged, or ranted about how it's summer. I will say that the heat is a tad excessive for me and it's super muggy, but I will make it. I'll just be a sweaty, cranky mess. I've taken precautions to stay smell-free for my fellow public transportation users, I just hope they do the same. I can't believe that I am looking forward to Arizona at the end of July since it means tripe-digit temperatures, but since the humidity is <20%, it makes for a much more pleasant heat that let's your sweat evaporate as soon as it's on your skin. Not like DC where the air is already completely saturated with moisture so your sweat sticks to you and the only way to cool down is A/C or complete submersion in a pool.

I take off tomorrow morning and will probably have a twitter-spree of witty observations, so you can get mini-blogs from me in 140 characters or less here. Since I like to keep my tweets on lock, you'll have to request to follow me, but patience, young grasshopper.

Hope everyone is staying cool in this heat wave!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

So What Wednesday

You know the drill...Shannon at Life After I Dew hosts this weekly post.

So WHAT if...

  • I am about to stress rant on you? It's what is running through my mind.
  • I have two work days left before I'm on the road for work and then a week of vacation. Needless to say, I've got a lot to get done in the form of work.
  • I am dreading Arizona? Not for the heat. Not for the jet lag. But because I will probably have to do 6am conference calls. That's right. SIX O'CLOCK IN THE MORNING. 
  • I will put up with the 6am conference calls? Not because it's, you know, my job, but because it's better than while on vacation.
  • I can. not. wait. for vacation? I mean, I have cute surprises for my fellow vacationers, cute suits, cute dresses, oh and, you know, like the BEACH.
  • I don't know when or how to pack for two weeks? I will be town for about 12 hours, where only about 9 of those will be usable in between the trips. So, I've got to be ready to go.
  • I will make obsessive lists and lay out every day's outfit with accessories? For both trips? It makes sure I don't forget something vital like, you know, a bra. (Lesson learned. The hard way.)
Happy Hump Day, folks! And make it over to Shannon's blog.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Retail Therapy and Being a Maxxanista

On Saturday,  I decided that I needed a little retail therapy. I got myself a zippy Mini from Zipcar and headed out to Tysons Corner in Virginia.

I had a great time just going where I wanted, perusing what I wanted, and trying on what I wanted. I love shopping with my friends, but there's something about the one-on-one time that it truly therapeutic for me.

My first stop was to T.J. Maxx. My friend Caitlin works for their corporate office and has talked about all the great finds that she has from her local T.J. Maxx. My hot pink Converse from my NKOTBSB weekend was a T.J. Maxx.

Let me tell you, it takes a game plan and patience for my mind to stop jumping around in that store. There's just so much that I want to see, look at, try on that I have to divide and conquer. First, shoes, second housewares, third accessories, fourth is clothes.

My plan worked and I was able to take away quite a haul.
Pumping up my wardrobe.
In the end, I got a Jones New York suit, Calvin Klein dress, Adrienne Vittadini top, two other tops for suits, two pairs of shoes from Anne Klein and Me Too, Carter's onesies, Gerber onesies, and a baby gift set. How much did I save? From the retail values, I saved $438!! That's 65% savings from the retail prices. Oh, and all the baby stuff is for a gift. Clearly.

I am so a Maxxanista.

After such a successful trip to T.J. Maxx, I just planned to browse the racks at the mall for the intent of my retail therapy. Well, I came into Vineyard Vines. They are having their "Whale of a Sale" which is an ADDITIONAL 40% off sale prices.

An hour later, I walked out with $163 in savings for 40% when it was all said and done. (There were some non-sale items in that haul.)

Preppy heaven.
I managed to find three pairs of shorts in a bright coral, white and navy, a navy cable knit sweater (I know, it's 90 degrees out, but it's a wardrobe staple), a fun nautical halter top, a polo (shocker), a silk ribbon belt, and a pair of flip flops. Totally preptastic.

It wasn't until I got home that I was reminded that my TEN YEAR HIGH SCHOOL REUNION was Saturday. I doubt that I would have gone if I were in Denver. (Ok, well, I might have gone to the Rockies game, but not in the Rock Pile, and meet up with them, but whatever.)

Instead, I was out at my favorite bar in DC. I ended up talking to this guy next to me that was not only from Colorado, but also from the Ranch which is a HUGE subdivision across the street from where I grew up. Most people you meet from Colorado are from the southside of the metro area since that's where most people live, so meeting someone from the northside and from a mile away from my childhood house is crazy.

To cap off the night, the bar played my senior class's song. Now, from 2001, it may seem like that wouldn't be too hard for a bar to play, but when your class song is "Dammit" from Blink 182, you would find the irony.

So, here's to great finds and savings. And finding that I was saved from reliving the awkwardness of high school.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Frippin' Friday

A non-So What Wednesday post?! A timely post about something rather than a week late?!



But yes, I have been struck with some blog-speration.

First, can I get an AMEN that it's FRIDAY?! Seriously, it's a four-day work week and I'm struggling. I can't imagine having to work five whole days. (Which doesn't happen until the second week of August.)

I find it hard to focus on "real life" when I have the next trip on the brain. I plan on getting out of the city to get some retail therapy, but it's just for perusal, not a purchase. But I do love shopping. Just in general. My next trip will be to Phoenix. In the heat of summer. Pun intended. As soon as I get back (literally, land at midnight and come back for a noon flight) I'm off to Fripp Island, SC and I cannot wait!

The week in Fripp will be with my friend and her family on a cute little island where there are no cars. The house comes with two golf carts, so we'll be tooling around the island, but really, I'll be walking from the house to the beach to the house to the pool to the house. If I get a stitch of makeup on my face that week it will be the one night we go into town for dinner.

On a related note, I really don't like my monogram. I mean, I like my initials AMO, but when getting my monogram with my last initial bigger, it's eh. How do I know this? I have a little trick up my sleeve as a souvenir to bring for my fellow house guests in Fripp. It does include the South Carolina flag and monogramming, so I'll share when I get them in. I have total vacation brain since I received the email that they were shipped.

Can I tell you that I also have my packing list started? I figure that I'm going to need to remember a lot for a week on the beach that I have to keep things together. I may have also started to set things aside for packing. Speaking of, my dad also bestowed upon me a backpack slash cooler. The top has a lot of pockets and big space for sunscreen, snacks, towels, random other things. Then in the bottom pocket is a waterproof and insulated for 10 cans! (Of soda, Dad...not adult beverages, of course. I mean...errr....)

Hope that you all had a great week and are gearing up for a fun summer weekend!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

So What Wednesday

It's that time again where I link up with Shannon at L.A.I.D. and say SO WHAT.

So what if...

  • I have to write this post in my email? I have a new office and I'm not sure of the narc level that they may have on my "breaks".
  • I consider reading blogs/tweets/updates my break? It's healthier than cigarettes. Well, as healthy as stalking can get.
  • I was so super nervous to turn in my first synchronized work product? It's what I was brought here to do, but since this is my first foray, I was super nervous.
  • I am torn that I'm missing the Colorado monsoon in exchange for the sweat monsoon in DC? Apparently, Denver has had deluge thunderstorms for the past week or so. But that means that the temps aren't in the 90s. In DC, the heat index is in triple digits and that means that I'm still soaked by the time I get home.
  • I grossed you out at the thought of being soaked in sweat? If you've ever lived in a humid place for the summer, you can sympathize. Don't judge, Colorado.
  • I'm debating how early is too early to go to bed tonight? I need to finish my book, I have The Hunger Games to get through, then The Lost Symbol, then The Heroes of Olympus. Hopefully there will be some books for my trips to Phoenix and Fripp by the time they roll around. At this rate, I might actually have to buy books for my nook!
  • I love that I get to read more. I never thought of myself as a bookworm, but the nook and my library have made it so easy to get wrapped up in someone else's world.
  • I have brunch on the brain? I have been talking about brunch with bottomless mimosas and suddenly the weekend can't come fast enough.

Now, go link up with Shannon and say your own SO WHAT!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Celebrating 'Merica

I think everyone deserves a birthday week, so why not celebrate America's 235th birthday for a solid week? That, and it makes me look like I'm on top of posting about the Fourth of July. Speaking of, head over to Adventures in the District to hear about my celebrations in DC for Independence Day. (You can right-click on the link and open in a new tab or window to read once you've read this gem.)

My dad lives in the country outside Lansing, Michigan, so he has some space and understanding neighbors that will let him shoot off some serious fireworks. I'm not kidding when I say serious. Like, have to have a permit serious. Like, have to get it from a supplier, not some tent on the side of the road serious.

I teased about the fireworks a little from my mobile post over the weekend, but now that I have photographic evidence with residual hearing loss and light sensitivity to prove it.

Getting the mortars ready.

The artillery
See? I told you they were serious.

So. Freaking. Cool.








Red, white, and blue.

So bright


Minor grass fire from a tipped mortar.

The aftermath

Lots of itty bitty pieces of cardboard

Baby frog visitor
 So, on my way home, I had to take a shuttle from the airport to the train station. This sign was posted at the stop. I'm concerned. Seriously concerned.

Legit. You can't make this shizz up.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

A Teaser for my Fourth of July Post

I know I have yet to post about my Fourth in the nation's capital, but it's only because I celebrate 'Merica for an entire week.

That's right. I am celebrating from Saturday to Saturday this year.

Here's a preview of how I'm capping off my weeklong celebration of 'Merica's 235th birthday:
Those mortars are going to launch....
To 80's and 90's rock. As I'm typing, "We Built This City on Rock 'n Roll" is rocking my world.

Disclaimer: I won't be anywhere near fire unless it's to roast marshmallows at the fire pit. This party also has strict if-you're-lighting-explosives-you're-not-drinking to prevent maiming, destruction, and general idiocy.

Also, I want to be a firework namer. There's "Get'in Down in China Town", "Mortar Mayhem", "Show of Force", and "Black Mamba". My guess is that "SEAL Team Six" will be rocking next year.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

So What Wednesday

It's that one day a week where you are semi-guaranteed to have a post from me when I link up with Shannon at L.A.I.D. for So What Wednesday.

So WHAT if...

  • I haven't posted about the epic fireworks from July 4th in the nation's capital? I didn't get home until 10:30pm that night after walking the 2 miles from the Mall. I was tired.
  • I went to the Cubbies game last night at Nationals Park? Another contributing factor to the lack of fireworks posting was that I went from work to the game and again didn't get home until late, so there you have it.
  • I have yet to pack for Michigan this weekend? Now, I know it seems like I have plenty of time before the weekend, but I'm leaving from work tomorrow and guess what? I have dinner plans tonight.
  • I may be skipping out on the aforementioned dinner plans so that I can pack and get my apartment visitor ready.
  • I am having a friend stay with me while I'm out of town? She's in town for work, so it's not like it's a trip to see me, but I still have to get the apartment clean and sheets changed so it looks like I have my life together.
  • I'm looking forward to hanging out in my dad's compound for four days? I will probably leave the house once in that span of time and the rest of it will be spent reading, napping, watching movies, hanging out at the fire pit, and napping.
  • I'm still bitter at my seventh grade English teacher *cough* Mrs. Clinton *cough* for counting my spelling test wrong because I didn't dot an i. Really? I went from perfect spelling to missing one because of a measly dot? I think me missing a dot is the least of your worries with other kids in the class struggling with there, they're, and their.
  • Speaking of which, I'm really peeved when people don't know the proper use of contractions? They're and you're should never have been invented or you have to pass an exam to use them. Get it right people.
  • I can't believe I'm still bitter about that spelling test something like 15 years later? It's an affront to my intelligence that a dot makes a word misspelled. Her reasoning defies logic and I cannot tolerate that.
  • I should really move on from the dotting of the i? And it's done.
Now, go link up with Shannon and say your own So WHAT!