Thursday, October 27, 2011

Its the small things...

Working with fraternities and sororities definitely has its challenges, but, for the most part, the challenges are usually accompannied by something that makes you feel really good about the job you have and the people you work with. After a late president's meeting this week, I was welcomed to an awesome email the following morning that read:

Hey just wanted to tell you thanks for the meeting. That was way more productive and controlled than any full presidents meeting we have had before. Only 45 minutes and we covered that much material? Sweet.
Its the small things that can make your day!

One a side note, there is a philanthropy event on campus called Big Pink Volleyball! Yes, you play volleyball with a big pink volleyball! I was impressed to see four Greek teams, three of which were teams comprised of all three councils! Yay for Greek Unity! I ended up playing on a team that comprised of the Assistant Director of Multicultral Affairs, Asst. Dir. of Student Activities, a Career Counselor, Coordinator of Peer Health, a Chapter Advisor, a Peer Health educator, and a chapter Expansion Consultant! Pretty random, huh? Respectively, our team was called The Oldies! Umm, I am pretty sure our average age was, maybe, 30!?!? Even though we did miserably, it was a lot of fun! Here is a picture for your viewing enjoyment!
That's, right, I am wearing the only pink t-shirt I own-My Delta Zeta Intramural shirt circa 2004!

I think the hardest part about moving to a place where you don't know anyone is making new friends! Well, I think I am well on my way to having a great support system in Kearney!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Don't Worry, I am Alive

Yes, I am still here! Anyone who works in Student Affairs knows that the months of August and September virtually allow no free time. I am not complaining, just stating a fact. Here is what I have been up to:

1. WORK
2. WORK
3. WORK

You get the picture! Have I been doing other things than work? Yes, here and there. Adam and I were able to head to Kansas City one last time before things got crazy for me. I was able to go to a friend's baby shower and spend some quality, down-time with another friend.

Oh, Adam and I have also been doing some casual car shopping. We plan on purchasing a new (new to us) car and the one we are really fixed on is a Nissan Murano. Adam was a little iffy about it when we were first looking, but once we test drove one, he fell in love with it! They have such a smooth ride for being an all-wheel drive vehicle. When we moved, we sold the Blazer that Adam drove so we have been down to one car. This really hasn't been an issue since we live on campus and I work on campus! I really have no need for a car during the day. Adam is also going to school so he walks to class everyday. We were hoping to purchase another car in October but since it hasn't affected our daily routine too much, we might wait longer just to save more money.

So back to the old J-O-B, I really do love it. I have definitely had challenging situations/days, but all in all, my first two months have been pretty good! We just wrapped up with sorority recruitment, and, somehow, it has been the least dramatic recruitment I have ever experienced! I am surprised by this because usually the first year at a new school makes the process a little more challenging. Ask me in a couple months once school is in full swing and I will let you know if I still love it just as much!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Wecome to Kearney!

Adam and I made the big move a little over a week ago to start our new life in Kearney, NE. We moved up on the 25th and were able to get everything unpacked by the end of the day on Tuesday. It was nice have a couple days in between unpacking and my first day to really get to know Kearney and scope things out.

I have really only live in two places-Rolla, MO and Maryville, MO. Both are great towns, but I get the impression that Kearney has much more to offer and we can't wait to jump right in.

My first day went surprisingly fast with meeting new people and chatting with students. Unfortunately, my email account hasn't been set up yet so it is making things difficult as far as scheduling meetings, setting up my calendar etc. Don't get me wrong, I have plenty of things to do,  unfortunately, the majority of what I need to do, is send emails!!! It is somewhat sad that my work is so dependent on it.

I have tried to familiarize myself with reports and files that were left for me but looking into those has only raised more questions for me to ask! It is a never ending cycle!

VisitKearney is a great site that lists several things to do in the area from shopping to camping. It also has a pretty comprehensive list of restaurants, lodging, etc.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Big boxes, little boxes, square boxes, rectangular boxes

I find moving somewhat of a therapeutic process. There are times where I do get sentimental about things and it also forces me to evaluate what I really do NEED in my life. While we are on the topic of NEED, I probably don’t need 60% of the things I own! I am definitely not a minimalist but I am definitely not a pack rat and don’t like a lot of knick-knacky things. I fall in the middle somewhere.

There are some items that I have been holding onto for quite a while for various reasons. For example, there was a dress I wore, right before Adam and I started dating, to his brother’s wedding. It was a spicy little number. I asked Adam last night if he remembered it and he definitely did and was able to describe almost every detail. This is rare for Adam because he has the worst memory (self-admitted), especially with clothing items. I have been holding on to the dress for about 6 years now and I have finally decided to give it away. I have worn plenty of dresses around him since then, but there was something the way he looked at me when I was ready that made him seem completely blown away! It was the first time I have ever seen him look at me like that and I think that is why I have been holding on to it for so long!
Last night, as we were getting deeper into the packing process, I took a moment and stood in the middle of our apartment with boxes all around me, bare walls, and thought to myself how depressing it is to see my life packed away in boxes! My pictures, candles, china, photo albums, linens; everything that makes a house a home, is all packed away. But, Adam and I will be able to create a new home in Nebraska and really my home is with him and the memories we create in it.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

25 for 25

Instead of being down in the dumps that I am turning the dreaded 25 I am going to celebrate how wonderful my 25 years of life have been! At this point in my life, I really don’t have much to complain about and I have had a pretty good life overall!

To celebrate my birthday, I am going to list 25 things I have learned in my 25 years!
1. Parents really do know more than we do! Although I thought I knew it all from the age of probably 14-21, I finally realized that is probably in my best interest to hear what they have to say!

2. Just because you have two college degrees, doesn’t guarantee the “ideal” job!
3. But, never settle! Keep going after what you want and deserve!

4. I can never make everyone happy. If I try, I lose myself and that is the worst of it all. I can only do what I believe is best and if makes people happy; great! If it doesn’t, it isn’t the end of the world.
5. There are ALWAYS two sides to every story and it is important to hear both of them before passing judgment.

6. There is no need to push others down in order to be on top! There is certainly room for everyone and you will get there quicker if you work together!
7. Always find a reason to laugh and smile every single day!

8. Dreams are long-term goals that you have for yourself if you let them be. I daydream all the time about future trips, homes, kids, etc. Sometimes I need those dreams to get through the day!
9. “We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.” Joseph Campbell. Anyone who knows me knows that I am a planner. While I have learned this quote, it is hard for me to still grasp at times. It is alright to life interject and let you live what was intended.

10. Choose your battles.
11. You are responsible for who you are. Not your parents, not your past, and not your friends. You determine who you want to be.

12. I believe any combination of chocolate and peanut butter can cure anything from a broken heart to a cold!

13. Never stop educating yourself. Even though I am out of school, I continue to educate myself through a variety of informal fashions. Whether it is through podcasts, professional associations, the news, etc. find something that makes you want to learn!
14. While I have my own home, there is nothing better than “going home.”

15. And, even though I am married, no one can replace my mom when it comes to being taken care of when sick.
16. Have the ability to find enjoyment in everything; including a rainy, gloomy day! That is when you actually do have an excuse to lay in bed all day, dozing in and out!

17. While I probably hated my brother for about the first 15 years of my life (we did have the occasional good moments), I wouldn’t have it any other way. I am happy to not have been an only child. Looking back on it, there would have been SEVERAL bored summers if we didn’t have each other!
18. My definition of “fun” has definitely evolved. What was once a great Friday night 4,5, or 6 years ago doesn’t seem so great anymore! Yes, I do enjoy getting together at local establishments once in a while, but the thought of doing that 2, 3, or 4 times a week doesn’t sound appealing whatsoever now! I am perfectly content staying at home on a Friday night making dinner with my sweets and watching a movie with a good glass of wine!

19. Try to live in the present. A friend recently posted on his Facebook, “Today is the tomorrow we worried about yesterday.” I am very guilty of worrying too much about the future and it causes me to miss out on the present and not remember the past.
20. Giving feels much more rewarding than getting.
21. I find it perfectly acceptable to watch a marathon of useless, trashy, drama-filled reality TV!
22. I also find it perfectly acceptable to watch the same move 20+ times because it is just “One of those movies.”
23. As messy as I was as a child and teenager, I really can’t stand clutter and messes now! In that respect, I truly am my mother’s daughter!
24. Never really know what you have until you no longer have it. I live in good ol’ Maryville for 6 years and even though it is quite a bit smaller than Rolla, I miss a lot of things about the city and the University that I never thought I would. Such as, a good grocery store is hard to come by and I was definitely spoiled by the Hy-Vee in Maryville! Why I never took advantage of the dinner theater at the Hangar before grad school is beyond me. I could go on, but I won’t!

25. I am sure the next 25 years will have its highs and lows! Bring it!




Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Watch out Nebraska!

That's right, we are moving to Nebraska! I was able to secure a job at the University of Nebraska-Kearney as the Assistant Director of Student Life for Greek Affairs. My start date is July 1 and I already have so many ideas for when I get there! I can't wait to start meeting with students, staff, and graduate assistants! I know that the first year in the field as a full-time professional is, undoubtedly, the hardest one, but I am ready to take on the challenge!

It has been great living in Rolla for the past year and being so close to my family, but I think it will be good for Adam and I to move away for  awhile. He will be able to go back to school full-time while I work and by the time he is done, we are hoping he will secure a job in the Kansas City area.

While Kearney is in the middle of Nebraska, there are a lot of things going for it. The city itself is about 30,000 people. There are lots of great restaurants, shopping, and outdoor activities. Kearney is about 3 hours from Omaha, 4 hours from Kansas City, and about 8 hours from Rolla. Since Kearney is located further west, I am looking forward to the travel opportunities that will be presented such as the Black Hills and Mount Rushmore (4 hours away), Denver and surrounding area (5 hours away), and the Grand Teton National Park (12 hours away).

One benefit to the position as that I am required to live on campus. The University will provide a three bedroom/two bathroom apartment for Adam and I. That's right, no rent or any type of utilities! This will also be a great way for us to save a lot of money so that when Adam is done with school, we should be ready to buy a house!

I know it will be especially hard for me being so far from my family. But like I said before, it will be good for us to be more independent and it won't be forever!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

365 days

Well, ok, our anniversary is May 22 so I still have four days but I think I will still feel the same way about our first year of marriage in four days as I do right now! Plus, as I write this, I have some down time, which I won't have, come this weekend!

At this time last year, I was probably way too stressed out over floral arrangements, programs, etc. and it was probably all being taken out on Adam. Looking back, I wish I had taken the advice that my mom had given me, more seriously: Don't sweat the small stuff. Will I still be married at the end of the day? Yes. Will we still have a wonderful marriage when it is all said and done? Yes. Adam took it all and certainly didn't have to. He was my rock then, and continues to be the one person who can calm me down when I am overworked which is one of the many reasons I love him.

Here are a few pictures from our beautiful day!

Completely stressed leading up to the wedding but the day of, cool as a cucumber!

I just love him!

This epitomizes the day entirely: Sweet and beautiful love!


Isn't he the most handsome?




I had to include a picture of the cake because it was the sing most detail I was most excited about!


I have learned quite a few things about Adam, myself, life, family, and marriage in the last year. Every year is a growing experience and this year was no different as we started our life growing together. Here are some of the bigger things I have learned this year that I think will only strengthen our marriage and us, individually, for the future.
  • Some of the things we have experienced this year (unemployment and overall lack of stability) have really only strengthened our relationship for the better. We have learned to depend on each other for guidance and support and have learned to trust that God will provide and has a greater plan for us. I feel that we are beginning to see the light and I know even better things will come this year.
  • It is alright to have alone time and I do require this at least a couple times a week. I don't need to spend every waking minute with Adam, just because we are married. I do like to have time to myself and have my own interests. I enjoy having the time during the day where we have two completely different jobs but are still able to discuss what is going on in our work life.
  • It is alright to have our own friends and spend time with them without the other. In the fall, I had a couple bachelorette parties to attend while Adam stayed at home. This Spring, Adam had the same thing where he was gone for the weekend. I don't mind it, and I actually I welcome it. Am I ready to get home or for him to get home come Sunday afternoon? Yes. But I think it makes us appreciate each other more and appreciate the relationship we have with our friends more.
  • I am very grateful for the opportunity I have had being close to my family and for Adam to become closer to my family. When I first went to college, I never imagined moving back to Rolla. As I have gotten older, I have come to appreciate my family much more and in a different way. I am confident there will be a time (it may be this year, it may be in four years) that I will move away from my family once again so I truly do appreciate the time I have been able to spend with my family. It has also been wonderful seeing Adam get to know and grow closer to my family as well. I hope to have that experience with his at some point.
  • I have never been more proud of Adam than I am at this very moment and I have a feeling that will continue to grow as well. Not only has Adam discovered what kind of relationship he wants God to play in his life, he has taken significant strides towards going back to school and completing his degree. I have seen him work harder this past Spring (in school and with his job) than any other time through the course of our relationship and it makes me so proud.
There are so many other points I could touch upon, but as I reflect on the past year, those were the major things that came to mind. I know we will only have one "First" Anniversary, but I would like to think that all of them will be special. Each year we will experience lots of firsts whether it is our first pet, first house, first road trip, etc. each anniversary will include its firsts. Happy Anniversary to my Adam and I can't wait to celebrate several more "Firsts" with you!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Mixed Emotions

I have mixed feelings regarding Osama Bin Laden’s death. While I watched CNN Monday evening when it was announced, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of disappointed when I saw the reactions of my fellow Americans. Am I happy that someone with such hatred towards, not just the United States but to mankind is no longer a threat; yes. Am I happy someone died? No. In addition, I am not sure if jumping for joy and having mass celebrations across the country was the best reaction as it would egg on his followers. Instead of celebrating the death of someone, what if we continued prayer for the people he inflicted harm upon?

Unlike so many that were affected by the actions of 9/11, I was stuck in Midwest bubble and could only imagine what it would have been like to experience such a tragedy through internet and TV. Yes, it was a very devastating event. Yes, it instilled a lot of fear and anger inside so many. However, I am not sure if the way we celebrated the death of an individual should have been the appropriate action. I will celebrate when terrorism has died, not when a terrorist has.

What are your thoughts on the subject? This is one of the great things about the United States; our ability to speak freely without punishment.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Easter

Hello, again! I haven’t written in a while due to the fact I haven’t had much to write about. As many of you know, this past weekend was Easter and it was particularly special this year because Adam decided to join the Catholic Church. I am not familiar with the process of joining a church for other denominations, but I have a feeling that our process is a little more structured and takes a little bit longer.

I won’t go into full details regarding the process, but it did start in September and he was confirmed and received his first Communion at the Easter Vigil mass Saturday Evening. This mass is unlike any other mass we have during the rest of the year. There is a lot of ritual and tradition that goes into it and it is a very long mass; but it is one of my favorites. The entire services was about three hours long (this is uncharacteristically long and it is typically about 2 hours) but not once during the entire mass was I bored or disinterested. It truly is a beautiful a beautiful service.

Originally, a lot of Adam’s family was planning on joining us for the service; however his grandfather had surgery that Friday in which his mom went to be with her parents in Arizona at that time and his brother’s fiancĂ© broke her leg a few weeks prior and had surgery so she was pretty immobile. However, Adam’s dad and stepmom made the trip from Omaha and I know that it meant a lot to Adam to have his dad’s support. Overall, it was a great weekend.
For more information regarding the Easter Vigil service, I would recommend reading this link. I think it gives a pretty good synopsis of the different parts of the Mass.



Thursday, April 14, 2011

Spaghetti Squash Experiement

I normally don't post recipes, but feel like I need to share this with everyone!

In an effort to eat a little more healthy, I stumbled upon a spaghetti squash recipe. Since I am a lover of all carbs (especially pasta) I thought I would go ahead and give this a try. I really wasn't even expecting to try this until summer since it is somewhat out of season, but I was at the local grocery store in Produce and just saw it sitting there, staring at me, saying "Buy me! You won't regret it!!!"

 I don't have step-by-step pictures, but I do have a few and I do have the recipe.

After baking the squash for 45 minutes, take a fork and shred the inside

Pretty much hollowed out at this point

The squash mixed together with the peas, chicken, tomatoes, and sauce




Serve with some parmesan cheese!
Spaghetti Squash with Grilled Chicken and Sun-dried tomatoes
Cast of Ingredients
  • 1 whole Spaghetti Squash

  • 2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

  • 4 cloves Garlic, Minced

  • 1 cup Chicken Broth, Divided Use

  • ⅓ cups Sundried Tomatoes, Chopped

  • 2 cups Broccoli Florets

  • 1 cup Frozen Peas

  • 2 whole Chicken Breasts, Grilled And Sliced

  • ¼ cups Grated Parmesan Cheese

  • 1 pinch Salt/pepper To Taste


  • Preparation
    1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees (F).
    2. With a sharp knife, cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise. Scrape/remove seeds with a spoon.
    3. Place squash halves cut side down on a baking sheet: bake for 45 minutes. Let squash cool.
    4. While squash is baking, in a large, deep skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic. Saute 1 minute.
    5. Add 1/4 cup of chicken broth, sundried tomatoes, and broccoli and saute 5 minutes.
    6. Add peas, grilled chicken, and remaining 3/4 cup of chicken broth. Shake about 1/4 cup parmesan cheese into mixture (just enough to thicken the chicken broth).
    8. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover skillet and simmer for about 3 minutes.

    9. 1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees (F).
    2. With a sharp knife, cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise. Scrape/remove seeds with a spoon.
    3. Place squash halves cut side down on a baking sheet: bake for 45 minutes. Let squash cool.
    4. Using a fork, scrape the inside of the squash with the tines to remove strands.
    5. In a large, deep skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic. Saute 1 minute.
    6. Add 1/4 cup of chicken broth, sundried tomatoes, and broccoli and saute 5 minutes.
    7. Add peas, grilled chicken, and remaining 3/4 cup of chicken broth. Shake about 1/4 cup parmesan cheese into mixture (just enough to thicken the chicken broth).
    8. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover skillet and simmer for about 3 minutes.

    9. Once squash is done baking, shred with fork. It should be soft and easy.9. Mix squash with the chicken and pea mixture.
    10. Serve with parmesan cheese

    This is a great, healthy substitute to pasta. I have read that people will just top the squash with marinara sauce as it was spaghetti! If you haven't tried this wonderful veggie, do it ASAP!!!

    Wednesday, April 6, 2011

    Cross-Country Road Trip

    Adam and I have been toying with the idea of taking a road trip to see his grandparents in....ARIZONA!!!! I have never been west of Colorado and, while he has, he greatly wants to visit his grandparents and spend some quality time with them!

    The longest we have been in the car together was a trip to Lake Michigan from Kansas City last summer which was broken up into two days. The trip to AZ will obviously be broken up as well and I think our marriage can survive a road trip like this, but Adam is a little worried! I don't blame him, I can definitely be a back seat driver!

    Whenever I think of the possibility of this trip, I get really excited for a variety of reasons! 1. To see some sites that I have never seen before, 2. Spend quality time with the hubby! 3. Spend some quality time with his grandparents!

    So I am asking all 4 of my subscribed readers and whoever else takes the time to read this thing, what advice do you have for taking an affordable, fun-filled road trip? How do you budget your time, your stops, etc.? These questions are especially aimed toward Candice who, her and her hubby, have taken several road trips all over the place and always see to have a WONDERFUL time!

    Wednesday, March 23, 2011

    Selfish Newlywed

    My first post in this blog I discussed my current work situation and how I am not completely satisfied by it. When I say satisfaction, I am not talking about money or benefits, but what I am taking away from the position. On a regular basis I ask myself if I have learned anything new about myself or about the industry, and on a pretty regular basis the answer is "I have learned this is not where I want to be." In my current role, I have never once answered, "Yes, even though I secretly cried after a student yelled at me and I have two meetings this evening and a paper to write for graduate school, I still love what I do and wouldn't trade it." While that answer doesn't specifically apply to my current position but very much so with my last position, I still want to know and see how far I can be pushed and see what I can handle.

    I know I should be happy that I have a job. I get it. The economy sucks, there are millions of people without work, I have a nice home, a great husband, great friends, great family, etc. but I want more. I know this sounds selfish, but I want more out of my career. My current job is not a career and I view it as just a job. But when do I just give it up and be content with my current work situation. It is hard for me to be content when I spend approximately 36% of my waking hours at a job that I don't like and feel that I am not making a difference. I blame this on my parents for raising me too well. I could care less if I make more money, but I want to know that at the end of the day, I have made a difference. I think it is great that my parents instilled this philosophy in me: money isn't important, helping people and making a difference is.

    Even though we are settled in, I am still applying for jobs elsewhere. Adam is a blessing and still tells me to go for it if I will be happier. I just feel that everything else in my life is essentially seamless and perfect, but my job situation isn't. Am I being selfish? Do I want to much or have too high of expectations? Is it bad to want a well-rounded life and career?

    Wednesday, March 16, 2011

    103rd Best Ever part 2

    Well the St. Pat's festivities have finally concluded at the Missouri S&T campus and in the community of Rolla. To recap, I had a friend come down and partake in the festivities with me. Friday night we went to the coronation ceremony of all the student knights and honorary knights. I normally wouldn't have gone to this except my dad became an honorary knight this year and this is a very high honor at Missouri S&T.

    
    My dad and I after his coronation.


    After the coronation we headed over to The Grotto-local establishment. Unfortunately, I did not get any pictures that the infamous bar, but I wish I could. There were people there ranging from men who attended school back in the 60s to current students now. It was a very diverse population!

    Saturday morning was the parade which I did get some good pictures of! Since my dad was a knight he was able to ride in a corvette and throw beads. There were floats, kudgels, horses, marching bands, the whole nine yards. There was even this:
    
    Well, I don't know why it is turned on its side and I don't know how to fix it, but I think you get the idea. St. Pat's really does bring out the crazies! Notice I was being respectful by not including her head!

    
    
    Me and Val

    Dad throwing beads!

    St. Pat and his guards riding into town


    My brother, my dad, and me
    Also, every year, St. Pats committee sponsors a free concert. This year it was Reel Big Fish. The hubby was very excited as it is his kind of music!

    All in all, it was a good weekend. Every year it is different, but always fun!

    Tomorrow is the real St. Pats holiday (and I like to think my national holiday) so eat some corned beef, soda bread, and drink so green beer for me!

    Do you have any St. Pats traditions?

    Wednesday, March 9, 2011

    My Lenten Resolution

    Today marks the beginning of Lent for 2011. Ash Wednesday has always been a favorite mass of mine. The solemnity associated with the mass helps me reflect about what Lent is truly about and what my focus should be on.

    In the past, I have always given up some kind of food such as Diet Coke, chocolate, fried food, etc. I feel as though giving up those things was done more out of selfishness than me trying to better myself spiritually and morally. This year I have decided to do something different not just because of the selfishness factor, but also because I have been able to successfully maintain healthy eating habits for the past couple weeks so I feel as though giving up bad food would be a cop-out.

    This year, I have decided to give up gossiping. The main reason behind this is because I have more recently started to feel uncomfortable with the gossip that surrounds me; more specifically negative gossip that I feel can be hurtful. I just don't want to surround myself with that kind of negativity. If I am able to separate myself from it, I think I will be a more positive person and an overall better person because of it. I am confident there will be some slip-ups and I think that is alright, as long as I recognize it and try to correct it.

    In addition to giving up gossiping, I am also trying to find something that Adam and I can do together to celebrate the season. Since Adam , is in the process of becoming Catholic, I think it would be nice to work with him on learning to pray the rosary. It would be a good refresher for me and something that could be habit, post-lent, for us to do.

    Lastly, it is time for me to go to confession. A lot of people who are not Catholic do not understand the importance/reasoning behind confession, and I don't blame you. From day 1 when I did my first reconciliation, I had a hard time understanding the purpose behind it and still do but always had a sense of relief after I had done it. It wasn't until I was in college that I started to feel uncomfortable going to confession. So, I haven't been in several years but it is time this year to start going again. Since Adam will be making his first confession during this year's Lent, it is time that I get back in the habit of doing it as well.

    For more information on Lent and the Easter Season, I would recommend checking out this site: http://www.catholic.org/clife/lent/. Keep in mind this is the Catholic church's stand on Lent and Easter and I do recognize that other forms of Christianity celebrate/recognize this season as well.

    What have you decided to do for Lent? Do you and your family have special tradition in recognition of Lent?

    Tuesday, March 8, 2011

    103rd Best Ever-Part 1

    Those who are remotely familiar with Missouri University of Science and Technology or with Rolla, in general, know that St. Patrick's Day is quite a big deal. The celebration has already started and will end on Sunday. In addition to the student's Spring Break which is in a few weeks, they get two additional days off of classes this week to celebrate. I don't think someone can fully appreciate the wonder of St. Pats unless you were either a student at Missouri S&T or are from the area.

    I have had the opportunity to celebrate several St. Pat's celebrations throughout the years in various ways. This year, it falls on the hubby's birthday and one of my very best friends will be coming down to celebrate as well. She has more of a connection to St. Pats than some of of my other friends because she knew several people who went to school here and is very familiar with it all. All-in-all, it should be a very good time.

    In the past, I have always known someone who went to school here and hung out at their house or went to some fraternity houses. Now that I am in my ripe old age of 24, I don't think the fraternity house thing will happen and the house parties won't be happening so I guess it will be time for me to experience the Rolla bar-scene which consists of a.) The Grotto (small bar, in a basement, with no circulation-you could call it a Missouri S&T institution) b.) the Public House Brewery (micro-brewery which just opened up-pretty decent) c.) the Tater Patch (a biker bar) d.) The Lock Room (bar above a furniture store...enough said) and e.) Brunos (standard bar). The bar scene in Rolla isn't much and maybe I would think more of it if I had gone to school here, but I am willing to give it a shot and maybe do a Rolla bar crawl this weekend. I can be the driver since I will not be drinking. No, I am not pregnant. Just trying to have a healthier lifestyle! I can chauffeur around my friend and husband!

    For more details and the history of St. Pats you can check it out at http://discover.mst.edu/2011/02/best-ever-st-pats.html#more or go to http://bestever.mst.edu/.

    I will be post pictures and stories of the weekend next week!

    Wednesday, February 23, 2011

    Dreams of Summer

    We have been getting quite a few warm spells the past couple weeks which make me only long for everything Spring and Summer will bring! Okay, not everything. I could do without bugs, and humidity, but I will pretty much take everything else.

    I can't wait for float trips with family and friends I can't wait to buy fresh fruits and veggies every Saturday morning from the local farmers market. I can't wait to get the grill started up and have the hubby start grilling chicken, steaks, kabobs, fish, veggies, pizza, etc! I can't wait to start a little outdoor oasis on our back deck with flower boxes and planters. I can't wait for possible outdoor concerts, weekend trips, hiking, and maybe a vacation!

    As much as I can't wait for these things, I am really trying to live in the present and enjoy current happenings!

    So, this weekend, I can't wait to see my sister's science experiment and a Science Olympiad, the Missouri state FIRST Robotics competition hosted by Missouri S&T, going to the lake for some shopping on Sunday with my mom and sister, and watching the Oscars!

    Spring and Summer will be here soon enough and I am sure when the end of July rolls around, I will be ready for fall!

    Until then, I have posted some pictures that make me think of summer or are some favorite summer memories!


    My birthday pizza that my roommate made for me when I turned 21! That was an awesome summer!

    Farmers Market! I can't wait!

    Me in Germany with my mug of beer from the Hofbrauhaus!

    Me mom and me hiking in Germany. Hands down, best vacation EVER! I can never say thank-you enough to my mom for such a wonderful trip!

    Yummm! Grilling! I want to get the Weber grilling cookbook that has everything from meats to veggies to pizzas to desserts!

    This will always be my favorite summer destination! Door County brings me so much peace and relaxation!

    Awesome roomies my junior year of college! This was the start of the summer!

    Best summer memory to date, our beautiful wedding last May!

    What are your favorite summer memories? What are you looking forward to most about spring and summer?

    Tuesday, February 22, 2011

    It will all be worth it!

    As many of you know, I currently have a job that is not favorable by any means and still continue to look for work. The difference between this year and last year when I was job searching was that I was looking all over the country for work, while, now, my search is more localized to the Midwest. I try not to get frustrated with my current job as I know, with the current economic climate, I should be lucky that I even have a job.

    While I want to find a job so very badly, I also have Adam to think about. Right now, he is going back to school and is hoping to be full-time in the fall depending on what kind of financial aid we receive. He wants to go to school for Electrical Engineering, and, let's face it, he will make more money than I ever will working in education. We are married now and I have to think of his needs and goals in life as well. He is so supportive and tells me to keep applying for other jobs, but in the back of my mind I am always thinking, "Will this be the right move for us? Should I just wait it out here until Adam is done with school?" I hate making big girl decisions!

    Tuesday, February 15, 2011

    My personal take on Valentines Day

    While I know there was much celebrating yesterday for Valentines' Day, I just can't get excited about it. I think it is great for the people who get nice things and go out to dinner and really show their love towards their significant other, however, my attitude is, shouldn't you want to show your love throughout the rest of the year? I also think some of it is a waste of money. The cost of the bouquet of flowers my husband could get me on Valenetine's, could buy me two of the same bouquet any other time of the year. I also feel like too many peole put too much pressure on what will happen on this holiday that they end up being let-down in the long run. That is no fun for anyone!

    I don't want to be a Debbie-downer regarding this holiday and I am happy for everyone who had a FABULOUS holiday, but this is my blog and I feel as though I can speak my mind freely.

    With that said, however, my husband and I did have a quite night at home. I made a new pasta sauce that I have been wanting to try, we ate used our crystal stemware and china that we started getting for our wedding, and I made a special dessert as well. When dinner was almost done, I went to change my clothes and I came out to a candle-lit apartment with my favorite songs playing. It was perfect and not overdone. There was no pressure.

    These are the little guys I made for dessert! They were the perfect size. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture of the ones I made but they looked very similar to these!


    Pictures of the apartment when I came from changing my clothes!



    Am I being a hypocrite? What did you and the love of your life do for Valentine's Day?
    

    Thursday, February 10, 2011

    To review, or not to review?

    "Great people talk about ideas. Average people talk about things. Small people talk about other people." This is a quote that I am going to try to keep in mind more often as I go on with my daily life. Lately, I feel as though more of my conversations have been circling around individual people and I don't like that about myself. In order to remedy this, I started thinking about doing an article review/discussion with my husband. This was something I enjoyed doing in while in graduate school, and, while we only discussed higher education "hot topics," it was a great way to exchange ideas and thought as well as challenge my thinking.

    There are a couple reasons why I would like to start this with the hubby. First, Adam and I don't have cable (which is no excuse to not keep up with happenings) but I think this would be a great to stay well-versed with current events. Second, since I am not in school anymore, I feel as though my mind is turning into mush. I would have never said this a few years ago when I first started college, but I want to be a life-long learner. If I am able to learn, why let that ability go to waist? I don't have to be enrolled in classes to learn but can easily learn through article review and discussion.

    I still need to present this idea to Adam but I was thinking we both pick one article a week for both of us to read and discuss them over dinner. What do you think? Should article reviews be reserved primarily for classes and work? Or, can husbands and wives partake in this activity?

    Wednesday, February 2, 2011

    Snowzilla, Snowmageddon, Snocopalypse, whatver you want to call the Great Blizzard for 2011

    In my last post I mentioned how we wanted to take advantage of the beautiful, 60 degree weather we had last weekend; especially since the Midwest we were supposed to get slammed with a major winter storm. As each day approached, the storm sounded worse and worse. The paranoid folk of Rolla, MO hit the stores to stock-up for this "never-seen-before" weather. The storm stretched about 800 miles. Rolla got hit with more ice than anything and probably, by the middle of Tuesday (02/01) we had about an inch of pure ice-then the snow started to fall, and fall, and fall. While this weather did call for a lot of school cancellations (including Missouri S&T for two days in a row), the weather wasn't as bad as what I was expecting. Now, my friends in the Kansas City area, for example, REALLY got slammed and from what I heard, we got more ice; they got my snow!

    Here are some pictures from the weather. I wish I had gotten some better ones and some pictures of us sledding and playing in the snow, but these will have to do!

    The family dog having a good time. This was taken on Tuesday, before we got a lot of snow!

    Our little back deck off of our apartment!



    Monday, January 31, 2011

    Spring, where are you?

    My little weather buddy on my desktop says it is 32 degrees outside. It is currently raining. This means, rain will freeze. Additionally, the entire midwest is expecting a "Colossal" winter storm over the next couple days.

    Now, riddle me this: How can it be 32 degrees today with expected bad weather conidtions when it was a BEAUTIFUL 62 degrees on Saturday; a meer two days ago?

    Well, we took advantage of the warm weather as much as we could by going hiking and exploring areas of the Ozarks that Adam probably thought never existed!

    Dillards Mill

    
    
    Enjoying the beautiful weather!
     The beautiful weather made us start discussing summer plans that consist of float trips, outdoor concerts, and possible vacations!

    Please come soon, Spring!

    Friday, January 28, 2011

    Exploring St. Louis

    Last Saturday morning we randomly decided to get out of the house for the day. Since St. Louis is conveniently close, we took a little day trip to the city and asked my 12 year old sister to tag along!

    My sister-In all her sass and glory!

    The day started off with a stop at Imo's Pizza-A St. Louis staple and then we headed off to the city museum. Adam was a little apprehensive since it was crawling with kids and he thought that he was too old and too big to appreciate the wonders of the museum! He was wrong!




    Cammie and I having a little fun!

    With all of the cold, nasty weather we have been getting, it was nice to get out for a little bit and experience something new! We literally could have spent hours in that place (10 story slide, caves, tunnels, aquarium) but eventually needed to leave! We hope to go back in the Spring or Summer when we can experiences the outside and rooftop areas of the museum!

    Tuesday, January 25, 2011

    So when are you guys having kids?

    I feel as though from the time we got back from our Honeymoon until now, that question has been asked AT LEAST twice a month. It was much more frequent when we first got married and has slowed down significantly. Here are the following reasons why that question bothers me so:
    1.       Why do people automatically assume that since you are married, you are going to have children? What if we didn’t want kids? Does that make us bad people? Now, my husband and I do want to have children, but not for a long time!
    2.       What if we are unable to have kids? I am pretty sure that is no one’s business besides my own, my husband’s, and our family. How awful would you feel if you asked someone when they were going to have children, and the reason they currently don’t isn’t because they don’t WANT to, but they can’t. Since we aren’t ready for children, I don’t know if this would happen to us and, obviously, I hope it doesn’t; but I know that I would be extremely upset if that were the reason we didn’t have children thus far.
    3.       IT IS NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS. The people who REALLY know us, know what we are planning on. If you don’t already know, don’t ask! And it really is the people who don't know us well, who ask the most!
     So here it is, my husband is going back to school. We want to wait until he is done with school before we have kids, we understand that probably won't be for at least three years and we are fine with that. We also want to own a house before we have kids. We also want to get some of our student loan debt paid down before we have kids. Catch my drift? There are just certain things we want to do and that we want out of life before we have children.
    Now, obviously, if I happen to get pregnant before-hand, we will welcome a child with open arms and be thrilled!

    Saturday, January 22, 2011

    Can I just get a break?

    I guess you could describe the purpose of this blog is to not only share my experiences with others, but to keep a log for my sake. I think (at least hope) I will always remember major events (vacations, holidays, weddings, etc.) however, I also want to remember smaller events that, when they happen, they made me laugh, smile, provoked some thought, and, maybe, even shed a tear. While bigger events are exciting, I think it is the smaller ones that what make life interesting and worth living.
    As many of you know, I already have one blog going to track my running progress. As I started writing in it, I discovered that I wanted to share more than just my running adventures. This too sparked my desire to start a more personal blog.
    So a little background about me: I am recently married (hence the title!), living in my hometown (some days I love it, some days, I don’t), working at a job that isn’t quite ideal (welcome to about 90% of mid-twenty year-olds), and my husband is going back to school.
    My family means more to me than anything else which is why I am content with our living situation the majority of the time. There are a variety of reasons why we moved here after we got married. After an exhausting job search, I finally landed something at the local university, my husband is going back to school for engineering and there really isn’t a better school to study engineering than where we currently are living.
    This past year has definitely had its ups and downs. Between unstable work between my husband and I and unconventional living situations, we are definitely ready for some stability and for some positive movement within our relationship. While we are excited to see what the future holds, I think we are also unsure of it as well, just from our track record! And, in true accordance with the rest of our relationship, there may be something coming up that will rock the boat.
    You know how I mentioned my working situation isn’t ideal? Well, I just got back from an interview for a job that would be completely ideal for what I want to do. The catch: The school does not have any type engineering, the town is incredibly small (this wouldn’t be an issue but my husband will want a job), and it is nine hours from my family. The distance won’t be a major factor in the decision (if I am offered the job) but it is definitely on my mind. If this opportunity presented itself back in June when we really didn’t know where we were going to live and I didn’t have a job; then I think the decision would much easier to make. If I wasn’t married, it would be an obvious choice. Making tough decisions like this are what makes being a grown up incredibly difficult. L
    So here I am, navigating the first year of marriage and I am excited to share with you, the experiences that I think make marriage fun and exciting!