Friday, September 17, 2010


1. It's slow this week, so I got the day off from the bakery and blessedly heard from my old company, which needed several hours of work done. All's well that ends well!

2. I'm obsessed with bedbugs. Ok, not really, but I started looking up hotels on the Bed Bug Registry (I'll spare you the URL), and then tips on getting rid of them. I even signed up for Bed Bug Alerts for our neighborhood which is, blessedly, free of bedbug reports.

3. B & I leave this afternoon for a two-game football weekend in Durham. Can't wait! Roll Tide! Go Jackets! Go Rams! Yea Duke! ...this should go well.

4. Today? Working, cleaning, laundry, and an undeniable desire to bake cookies. Yum.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Type A?

A few months ago, my sister, her husband, B, & I were having a conversation about Type A people, the almost OCD set that needs everything just so.

Sister: You know, I read that most people like that actually have one area of their life that's a disaster. Like me, I have my car, which is always a disaster filled with kids toys and cups and who knows what else. But I'm ok with it.

B: I think I might be like that, too.

Sister: Do you have an area of your life that's a mess?

B: (pause)

Me: Ahh! It's me! It's me!

B: What?

Me: It's me! I'm your disaster area, the place you allow to be disorganized in your life. Oh my God, it's me.

B: It IS you! I never thought about that...

Here's hoping he doesn't think about it too hard...

Monday, September 13, 2010

Buying B Suits

Me: Will I get in trouble if I hum the theme to Pretty Women while we do this?

B: No humming or I will leave.

Final total at the store?

3 suits
1 tux
5 shirts
6 ties
2 pair of shorts
1 pair of khakis
1 bow tie (for an upcoming wedding)

Oooooooooh, ooooooh Pretty Bchen.
(Sorry Babe)

16 Months!

Missed it again!

This month has been crazy and wonderful, which is about how I describe all our months, I realize. B was talking about how busy we've been and he said, "I feel like everything just happened to hit this month." I replied, "I'm sure we'll laugh about that every August for the rest of our lives when we say the exact same thing!"

So, August 9 to September 9. B had bachelor parties, and we had two weddings for his dear high school buddies. We finished unpacking and organizing in time to take a belated Bar Trip to Miami and Key West in a convertible, where his parents said I could buy "a piece of art" for my birthday. I came home with a beautiful Christmas ornament and a killer swimsuit, both arguably "works of art" in my book!

Our weddings took us to Columbia, SC and Portland, Maine. Beautiful, amazing, fun weekends and both totally different!

We had our first weekend in J'ville, took B shopping for all new clothes (to add to his wardrobe that stems from high school and junior year of college, the most recent of which was six years ago), visited a church (whose pastor we literally can't understand), and both started work.

Praise God, we both love our jobs and neither of us has been fired.... yet. I still acknowledge that tomorrow is another day for me! :)

B's parents came to visit and see the place and (woohoo!) football season started. My birthday came and went and so soon, we hope, will the heat of the summer.

As for what we've learned about each other or from each other, well, moving does that to you. My freelance payments have been slow, so we've been figuring out more about finances. B is a first-time full-time employee, so he's learning the joys of navigating "leaving it at the office" and signing up for health care. The proudest thing for me? We're on the same team.

B & I decided early on that we could deal with anything if we were on the same team. No dividing and conquering in this house and, you know what, it's really worked out. Team K. Works for us!

I remember thinking that six months seemed like an eternity, now I can hardly believe that 16 months has felt like the blink of an eye. I am so lucky and blessed. Happy (belated, darn it) Anniversary, B!


I've finally found the year that you forget how old you are. It's 26. Or maybe 27. But I believe 26.

Multiple times during this past year I've found myself hesitating when people ask me hold old I am, not because I'm ashamed of the answer, but because I've honestly forgotten. Maybe this is why you're never suppose to ask a woman how old she is; it's not her age you might offend, but her growing senility. Or is it apathy. Either way, not good!

That's way of saying that I turned 27 (I think. Mom?) this week. B's parents were in town to see the place so we indulged and headed to a new restaurant named, appropriately, 'Town. (Yes, that's an apostrophe there. Welcome to high-class livin', folks!) It was delicious! And the perfect way to cap off a pretty perfect day which included hitting two Targets, trolling Ponte Vedra, selling B's parents a cookie at the bakery, suit browsing at Joseph A Banks, and generally being pretty darn happy.

Twenty-six was a good year. All told, I'm pleased with the progress of the company that is A, Inc. LLC. Talking in business terms, it's been a tough year. We've transitioned from full-time employment to full time freelance employment, but our excellent partner just started his own full-time job, so, all told, we're going places.

Things I've Noticed:

*I miss Dad more this fall than last fall. I keep thinking this is his first football season with the best seats in the house, but then I remember. Maybe this time last year I was too sad to be missing him?

* B & I get around. This year, we've gone to Hilton Head, Charleston, Florence, Atlanta, Columbia, the BVIs, Key West, Miami, Jacksonville, Durham, Chapel Hill, Birmingham, Top Sail, Willmington, Maine, Sonoma, Berkeley, Charlottesville, Cancun, somewhere in Texas, Princeton, and probably more. Makes me feel pretty amazingly blessed!

* I'm less risk-averse than I thought. I had to leave my full-time job, but found oodles of gigs as a nanny. That brought (and bought!) me the confidence to look into full-time freelance writing, which has turned out great. In the past, transition scared the mismatched socks off me, but now, not so much. It's like when I loved roller coasters until I knew enough to be scared of them, then loved them again after I figured out it was worth the rush. My sister nailed it when she said, "I wonder if you'll hate transition less now that at least one element (B) is no longer transitioning as well."

* B & I are a pretty good pair. I look back at our time together and it makes me smile. I call that a win.

* The more that I'm around B the more tempted I am to try to bring as many little people that are just like him into this world. He's a good man. I attribute this shift in mindset (ie, the desire for little people) to age and clocks and all manner of things associated with age, and of course to how great B is.

* No little people yet. For the record. Here it is in print. We'd love to have them visit, just not ready to start building pack & plays just yet.

* I long for the good in people. More than ever before, I want to believe that people are basically good and desire to do good to others and bring good to the world. See? Senility.

* Baby Tyler joined the crew. Welcome little man!

Twenty-six treated me well. I'm looking forward to getting 27 off to a great start.

The Day After: Coming Home

B, the good clerk that he is, had to be back bright and early for work on Monday, so after the wedding reception, which ended at 11, we headed back, grabbed pizza, then proceeded to try to pack at 1am before our 4am wake up call. It went something like this.

Me: B, can you pack the laptop?

B (in bed): Sure. Packing laptop.

Me: B! Are you packing it?

B (slouching further into the pile of pillows): I am! I'm packing it!

Me: B! The laptop! (a la "Ma! The Meatloaf!")

B: (Eyes closed, hands flat on the bed) I'm packing it! I'm packing it!

We had a two hour layover in Baltimore, where B was able to catch a few Zs before the second leg of our journey. We made it home around noon and (yea!), B ended up not having to go in, so we spent the afternoon snuggled up among our own pillows watching tv and snacking on whatever was left in the apartment.

After two weddings in two weeks, we're glad to have a break from the celebrations (and the wine... and the steaks... and the...) until October, when we gear up again for an affair in Atlanta!
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Best part of the night? There was a photobooth at the reception. It was worth the while...
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Wedding Day!

Sunday, the wedding day, was just as wonderful. More wandering, some shopping, clam rolls this time... life in Maine is good! It was cooler on Sunday, which makes me remember that I would HATE a Maine winter. Though Portland does have more restaurants per capita than any other city... For real.

B got gussied up in his navy tux (see? hotness. told ya.) and I met him at the wedding, which was held in this adorable chapel on Cousins Island. It was something right out of a fairy tale!

The reception was held at a nearby home/estate where we feasted under a big tent with plenty of wine, lots of dancing, and a raucus bus ride home.

Ryan & Wrenn, if you decide to renew your vows, we'll be there!
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Da Boys

Lobster shirts and all...
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More Rehearsal Dinner!

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Rehearsal Dinner!

B & I arrived in Portland, Maine on Friday afternoon after moving our flight up to avoid Hurricane Earl. (I'll spare you the fear-- no rain all weekend!) We met his parents, hopped in a rental car, and headed to the first event of the Labor Day weekend wedding: a casual barbecue. So fun, so relaxing, so... Maine. Fog rolling in off the water, salmon fresh off the grill... Did I mention we're moving to Maine?

Saturday morning, B & I headed out the wander after he picked up his oh-so hot navy blue tux (believe me, pics. to. follow.). I fell in love with a kitchen store, we stuffed ourselves full of lobster salad, and then we headed to Rivalries, a sports bar across from the hotel, for a morning of football watching before B had to suit up in his lobster shirt (yes sir!) for the rehearsal dinner. Two claws up, my friends!

The rehearsal dinner was soooo charming. It was outside under a tent. Wine flowing, appetizers passing, and 100 lobsters ready for the cracking. We had a blast working our way through the shells, into the butter, and through a night of fun toasts, a pony (yes, a pony), and a sereade with a made-to-order song from an up-and-coming singer/songwriter. It was a night under the stars to remember!

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LOVE him.

God bless our Mothers.
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Ryan's Wedding... All About Us

I'll be posting more about the fabulous wedding weekend that was Ryan & Wrenn's Maine extravaganza. However, I managed to snag a few images off the photographer's website of B & myself tearing up the dance floor. I love this man so much!

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Life at the Bakery!

Attention Ladies & Gentlemen:

I work at a bakery.

That's right, it's true. I've completed my first week and have had a blast, which I think my boss finds hilarious. I'm amazed at how tired I am at the end of the day, mostly from standing for four hours straight, but also from making change on-the-spot for, say, a $12.68 purchase out of a $50 bill.

In full disclosure, here was my first week:

Monday: Bakery closed! Pass go, collect no income.

Tuesday: Arrive! Notice everyone else wearing cute aprons, make a note to bring my own (thanks Nina!) from home. Hair off the face and back in a ponytail. Sporting my Merrels, a denim skirt, and the purple Polo shirt my mother-in-law bought me for this year's family picture. I'm winning no fashion awards, but I seem to fit right in.

Perch on a stool and observe most of the day. Success? Do not spill or break anything, do not offend anyone. Failures? Forgetting to have a customer sign a credit slip, confirming B's suspicions that the hardest part of my job would be figuring out the cash register.

Wednesday: Do my legs hurt? No, should they? Oh boy. Spent the day sporting my cute apron taking care of basic practices: cleaning up the front, decorating the front chalkboard, putting away clean dishes, helping customers. My in-laws were in town, so they came by and purchased a yummy pecan praline bar. And yes, took lots of pictures. Yea! Will share later. Complete first transaction with no error messages. Actually cheer for myself (after the customer leaves). Unfortunately, it was the third transaction of the day (did you know that cash registers work on a four-digit system and that the little "." button does nothing? I did not.).

Thursday: Stop the presses. I baked cookies. Granted, someone else made the dough and someone else took them out of the oven, but it's my first official foray into baking. For real. Come home on a cloud. Screw the Merrels. Am not in tennis shoes. And yes, my back hurts.

Friday: Forget cookies, now we're talking! I'm in charge of the front, so that means I keep things neat, sell to the customers, and package goodies for the call-in orders. But, when they need help in the back, I get to help, which means that I helped with individual chocolate cakes with raspberry filling. Yum, yum, yum. Made a delivery to a local hotel on the river and, no, I didn't take off the apron to do so.

Things I've learned:

* Bakery espionage is real. When you come in and order "one of everything," we're on to you.

* Cash registers are easy, you just have to understand that $.65 is actually just "65", so I suppose a $70 purchase would be "7000". Learning. It's what the cool kids do.

* Bakeries are not there specifically for you. They get most of their income from orders and contracts. They just like to share with you!

* Bakeries like orders. If you want to make sure you have a specific cookie, cupcake, or muffin in the store for you the next day when you're coming by, you can just call. Just call and say what you want. And they'll have it. It's amazing!

* As suspected, good bakeries use nothing but the best ingredients, but they aren't special, super eggs, they're just fresh, delicious eggs. And no preservatives.

* Some things you don't want to know about bakeries. Nothing on that column comes from my bakery, but I did hear how some of the other goodies around town are made and let's just say I'm ok with Crisco in my pantry, but not in my icing.

Week one at the bakery? Huge success. I'll let you know if I go back on Tuesday and find that they've locked me out.

Library Card! ...and Volunteering

I don't think there's a way to convey how happy this statement makes me:

I Have A Library Card.

Yea! This may sound like nothing, but I haven't had a library card since college, if that even counts. I haven't been able to get one because I haven't had a license with my current address that's been able to keep up with me during all the moves from Alabama to North Carolina to Atlanta and back again.

But it's true. I have one now!

I headed to the library for my volunteering interview; I'm going to work in the kids' section and assist with Monday morning story time, which I'm so excited for. A few noteworthy moments:

1) Browsing videos and finding a couples' workout video that, upon inspection, appeared to be more of a "gearing up for sexy time" video, complete with suggestive images on the workout ball. I will say, having B lay under me and do a pushup holding my feet in his hands while I hold myself in plank sounds hilarious. And injury inducing, as I'd certainly knee B in all sorts of bad places. Hellooooo broken nose.

2) I had to take a shelving test. I broke out into a sweat ensuring that I understood ascending (in the instructions), then proceeded to read through the lists of Smith, Smitz, Smath, .039, .0038, 3.9 Z, etc. And then I felt dumb for questioning if it was hard or easy!

3) Fun Fact: 10 people run the whole library. The rest are school-age volunteers completing their requirements. Oh boy.

But I'm so excited. Mondays, the library and I are going to be tight!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

What a Week!

B and I are rounding out his second full week on the job and it has been wonderful! He loves working for the judge, and I love that he comes home every day happy. Life is great!

Here's what's happening in our house this week:

1) I'm coming off my first fall(?) cold. I'm definitely in the "getting better" stages and finally broke down last night and took my first NyQuil. Ah-mazing. Welcome back, sweet sleep! That said, I still have the raspy, life-long smoker voice, but I'm preferring to think of it as "sultry".

2) It's good I'm getting better because we're off to Maine for the weekend! Two great friends are getting married so we're heading out in the morning for a three-day bender of lobster and clarified butter. Bring on the bibs!

3) Which is a great time to ask for prayers because apparently the hurricane that skipped Florida might be heading for.... Maine? We moved our flight up in hopes that we can get in before the storm hits which, for the record, seems like a terribly backwards thing to do. But what can we say? We're suckers for weddings. And clarified butter.

4) I don't think I say "thank you" enough. Case in point, Haley, do you know how much I love the bowl set you gave me as a wedding gift? Those little bamboo bowl with the serving tray? We use them for everything! Like today, I'm using them to hold the salsa and sour cream for my quesadilla. Love them. Thank you!

5) In a continued effort to display my gratitude, I've been looking for someplace to volunteer and just applied to work with kids at the local branch of our city library, about 3/4 of a mile away. I was going to work as a tutor in the afternoons, but B & I both had our reservations about the areas I'd be placed in and if the time commitment would end up being too great to fit the need. It paid well, but I think B's right; if the point of this year is for me to give freelance work a go and I'm already doing one "on the side" (the bakery), then will two mean that I don't have time for freelance work? For now, I'd say volunteering is going to fit the bill, so long as I find a place to let me do it!

6) Have you noticed that volunteering is hard? I've applied places, gone through training, and then never been called. Upon follow-up, I've found that the paperwork is out of whack or my number has been misplaced, which makes me a) want to go in and organize the office and b) wonder if the company is trying to break up with me.

7) Today I'm thankful for having such a wonderful husband. I've been icky all week and he's really run the show, cleaning the kitchen and making dinner. I'm especially thankful that he's a fan of leftovers. I looked in our dishwasher and saw the entire top rack was loaded with old Indian food takeout containers or, as we call them, Tupperware. When we cook, it heats the house up so that we try to make enough for at least a few lunches if not another dinner. Thankfully he's a huge fan!

8) And, another prop to B, I'm very thankful for my cast iron skillet. It cooks everything and makes it taste wonderful and crispy. The only other thing I'd like is a Green Egg, which would be an awesome bday present if it weren't $900 and we didn't have to move it again in a year.

9) B is fretting about what to get me for my bday next week. So far, I've been zero help. When he asks me what I want, I respond with gems like, "I don't know" or "I'll think about it" or "Oooh! One of those scrubby things for the sink." I've been told these answers are not super helpful.

10) New neighbor moves in today. Planning to make her cookies. Yea!

11) Finished my temp work for my old company. Bittersweet.

12) Finished that temp work in time to tackle my next looming deadline: Daily Guideposts. Due in two weeks!

13) I promise you I did consider taking pictures of a Big Green Egg, the top rack of my dishwasher, the great bowls Haley got me, and my cast iron skillet for this post. Then I got the lazies. Or the sickies. Whatever gives me the best excuse.