Thursday, December 20, 2012

NYC Isn't For Me

Earlier this week I mentioned that I had been staying pretty busy. This has mainly been from a new work assignment in Melville, NY. Unless you’ve been secluded away on a remote island, you’ve probably heard about Hurricane Sandy that struck the East Cost the end of October.
The last time I worked in New York was about six years ago. At that time I was working in Buffalo, so I might as well have been working in another country compared to being as close as I am to NYC right now.
Even though I grew up in an extremely small town, after I went off on my own I quickly learned that I like the conveniences and things to do in a big city. So one would probably think that working on Long Island, and being 30 minutes from NYC would be great for me. But it’s not.
NYC is just a little too big for me. I don’t like how public transportation is the only transportation in NYC. The other day I took the train into the city. Going into the city wasn’t too bad, but the return trip was. The train was crowded and full of people who had obviously had a more intoxicating evening than I had. (There was one too many Santa Claus’ on the train who had a bit much of holiday cheer.) And to top it off the train had a strange mixture of smells…people, booze, and food (which I still have no idea how anyone would want to eat on a train). By time I returned to the station it was all I could do to get in my car, make a bee line for the hotel, strip, and take a shower before going to bed. I just felt dirty.
Culturally NYC has tons to offer. I love the theatre and I am hopeful to take in some shows. I did see The Rockettes Radio City Christmas Spectacular (for the third time, although first time on Broadway!) which is wonderful if it’s touring in a city near you. I would love to see the Statue of Liberty and the Metropolitan Museum of Art too. I’m just hoping that my germ phobia, public transportation fears, and dislike of large crowds doesn’t scare me off too much.
If you've been to NYC and loved it, please let me know where to go and what to see!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

It's Always a Great Time For...Skincare!

Most people who know me know that I am a bit obsessed with skincare and make up. (Side note: just yesterday I found this wonderful skincare and makeup store…but that’s for later!) Imagine my surprise when I received an early Christmas gift notification for a one year subscription to Birchbox!
Let me be the first to admit that I had never heard of Birchbox (although thankfully my sister has!). It is a monthly service that sends you a box of beauty and lifestyle samples each month. Definitely right up my alley since I love to try to new skincare and cosmetic products.

Picture from

Unfortunately it might be a little while before I see my first Birchbox. I returned to a work assignment before I received the first box. And by time I travel home again, there might be two boxes waiting for me!
Stay tuned, more to come on Birchbox!
Ok, it’s later!
The other day while I was on the search for a Christmas gift for someone I found the most wonderful skincare store….Bluemercury! The best way for me to describe Bluemercery would be to say that it's a boutique version of Sephora or Ulta. The store is much smaller than Sephora and Ulta although it was wall to wall of the best of the best of skin care products. I was like a kid in a candy store!
The staff was extremely helpful without being overbearing and pushy. The icing on the cake is that the store also offers spa services. I was able to get my eyebrows waxed and shopping done at the same time! The particular store that I went to in Woodbury, NY has a new esthetician and I will be taking part of her introductory 50% all facials.
The store also offers complimentary gift wrapping. Major plus for someone like me who loves receiving a pretty package yet hates wrapping gifts!
And although I can't tell you exactly what I purchased (the recipient of said purchases might be reading my blog!) two of the brands that I love are Sara Happ and fresh. Never fear, after the fisrt of the year I'll tell you about the products I purchased.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

iPhone...Part II

Looks like I’ve been gone for a little while! Guess it’s true what they say about time flying when you’re having fun (and well, not having fun too).
Please don’t think that I’ve been all caught up with my new iPhone since I was last here. Although it has taken some getting used to, that’s for certain. I probably shouldn’t say it, but…I can’t say that I absolutely love my iPhone. (I know the true, die hard Apple lovers out there are shaking their heads in disbelief) When I said this to a friend of mine, all she could say was “Well, if you really miss your Android then maybe you should return your iPhone”. But it was the way that she said it, like she was totally disappointed in me. It was almost like I had said that her baby was ugly or that the lipstick she had on was hideous. She really took offense to me not being totally and completely in love with my iPhone.
I think I was just really used to my Android phone. Honestly the only reason I switched to an iPhone is because I have an iPad and I wanted to have all of my Apps on the same platform so I was getting the full benefit of the paid Apps that I have.
Fast forward to now!
I have found some things that I really love:
1)      I really love having my iTunes library on my phone so I can listen to my music whenever I want.
2)      I really love that I am able to stream my music via blue tooth in my car to listen to my music.
And my list probably stops there.
Siri and I have a love hate relationship. Although the other day after I thanked her for something, she said ‘You’re welcome. I live to please you.’ If only everyone felt that way.
If you have any cool hints and tips for iPhone please share them with me!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Welcome to the Dark Side

It’s official…I’ve crossed over to the dark side.
I purchased an iPhone!
I still can’t believe that I did it. I have been a loyal Android user since they first came out. I was really looking forward to upgrading my current phone to the Samsumg Galaxy SIII, until I started experiencing some problems with it last week. When I went to the Sprint store the customer service representative explained that since the last system update people have been experiencing the same problems that I mentioned. The resolution was to do a hard reset which I wasn’t against doing. I just thought that since my phone was acting up and I was eligible for an upgrade that I would dive into the iPhone waters.
For anyone who has read my blog, you’ve probably sensed that I’m not a big fan of my iPad. I am hoping that as I slowly integrate over to mainly Apple products that my love for them will grow and blossom. I know that I will enjoy App sharing (my Android only had free Apps on it) and the ability to listed to my music library from my phone. And I'll be able to purchase really cute phone cases! (It is all about the phone case, isn't it?)
If any of you have any helpful hints and tips or Apps that I should check out, please let me know!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

I'm Not in Kansas Anymore

A week or so ago I mentioned that I was being sent on a new work assignment. After being in Tarrytown, NY for almost a week, I was redeployed to another office located on Long Island. I’ll be the first to admit that my geography knowledge isn’t the best. Although I hadn’t given it much thought, I always thought that Long Island was a city, and not, well a long island with cities on it. (That’s fine, please go ahead and have a good laugh on that nugget of information)
Even though I live in a metropolitan area, I am quickly learning that I’m not in Kansas any longer. For instance, hotel rooms are very pricey without much in the way of amenities. I’m staying at a Days Inn and the rate is $179/night. And my room isn’t that big…there’s enough room for a queen sized bed and a small desk. And once I placed my two suitcases inside, there really wasn’t much room!

My Room
On a side note…I will say that this Days Inn is nice. (I don’t mean Four Seasons nice, but nice compared to other Days Inns that I have stayed at) The rooms were renovated this year and they look very contemporary, and above all they are CLEAN! The downside is the lack of space and that there isn’t a mini fridge and or microwave so I can keep some food items in my room. Fortunately when I return to this assignment after Thanksgiving I’ll be moving to an extended stay hotel which will offer more amenities for a long term stay.
The parking lot is also very interesting in that it only hold about 30 cars, if that. The street in front of the hotel is a closed street so there is parking there. Although if cars are parked on both sides of the small street, the street quickly becomes a one lane in or out on the street. I typically elect to park on the street so that way I am in front of the hotel and can get inside quickly.
I’ve quickly realized that these are minor inconveniences for me that will soon pass. I am fortunate to have a hotel room even if it means that I have a 40 minute drive each way to my office every day. There are many people who lost personal possessions and their homes due to Hurricane Sandy. I think I’ll survive having a small room and no refrigerator for a while longer.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Ask And You Shall Receive!

Imagine my surprise today when I received a Blogger Buzz update that A Blogger App had been made for iPad!

Although I can't figure out how to link back to my original post about blogging with an iPad (sigh), I am happy that things are moving in the direction to make it better for me to use my iPad for blogging.

I can add pictures....

Although I don't know where the picture is going to be positioned in my post. And I can't access my online Picasa web album to obtain pictures.

And it looks like I can't format my font either. So this new App might only be good for quick posts that lack my usual flair and creativity.

Guess I can't get everything I ask for...although it won't stop me from asking!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

What Time Is It?

And the other shoe drops…
This morning I noticed that the battery in my watch is now dead!
I can’t win for losing with this watch thing.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

What's Today's Date?

I’ll admit that I can be a bit obsessive about some things. Watches are one of them. I really don’t know where my watch fascination came from, although I can always remembering wearing one since when I was in high school. My very first watch is one that my Dad purchased for me. It had a brown leather band with a mother of pearl face and roman numerals for the numbers. (And believe it or not I still have the watch in my jewelry box)
Well, I believe my watch fascination has turned into a ‘problem’…
Earlier today when I glanced down at my watch, I noticed that the date was set to the 18th. Even though I didn’t have any idea what today’s date was, I didn’t think it was the 18th. So, I proceed to look at my cell phone and realized that today is the 13th. The 13th?!?!
Hard to see, although it does say the 18th
So, this means I haven’t worn this particular watch in several months since the date has skipped ahead by 5 days!
And truth be told, I have 5 watches. (And you might be wondering why anyone needs five watches) Each one has a different function…dressy, casual, gold versus silver.
I know, probably not real justifiable reasons, huh?

Monday, November 12, 2012

The Fresh Market

A few years ago when I worked in Virginia Beach I was introduced to The Fresh Market and it quickly became one of my all-time favorite grocery stores! To be honest I probably like it better than Whole Foods, Central Market and Trader Joe’s. I mean, each of those specialty stores have unique things that I like, but all around The Fresh Market is AWESOME!
Lucky for me I realized there is The Fresh Market where I am currently on assignment at! I happened to find it trying to locate a store that carries Noosa yoghurt (one of my recent favorite food finds!). And while there, I found all types of goodies….
Of course, Noosa yoghurt …
 Some wonderful prepared salads that I can eat for dinner….
How could I pass up granola brittle? Since there’s granola in it, it has to be good for me, right?
Not the best looking picture but the granola brittle is wonderful!
And then finally one of my favorite tea drinks (and if you're lucky enough to have an Argo Tea Cafe in your area I am so jealous!) …
So if you ever see The Fresh Market I highly recommend that you check it out…you won’t be disappointed!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Blogging With an iPad

I've been trying for awhile to wean myself from my laptop to my iPad. So I decided not to bring my laptop with me for my current work assignment. And here I am now trying to create a post to see what I like and don't like about using my iPad for blogging.

So far I've found that it's not the easiest to type a post. And I don't know how many times a word I don't want appears on my screen. I think my biggest complaint will be adding pictures to a post. Looks like my problem was averted as I can access pictures that I've uploaded from my phone to Google and from my Picasa web albums. Score! Although....I can't move the picture to where I really wanted it. (Hence why it is dead smack in the middle if the post for no apparent reason.

And I just realized that I can't scroll back to the top of this post to edit it. Hopefully there aren't any misspellings or completely wrong words.

Yeah, this is definitely one of those real random posts. Although seriously, does anyone have any suggestions on how to create posts with pictures to upload to Blogger via the iPad?


Saturday, November 10, 2012

Awkward and Awesome

Here are my awkward and awesome moments for the week (Inspired by E from E is Random who was inspired by Sydney at The Daybook): (All and all I have to say is that I had a GREAT week!)

·         Having maintenance in my apartment while I gone and someone taking the liberty to use my bathroom!
·         Being able to be a Walker Stalker for the Dallas 3 Day Walk.
·         Being able to meet some of my social media friends at the Dallas 3 Day Walk.
·         Finally being able to get a pedicure after months of 3 Day training and my walk. Believe me, it looks like I have new feet!
·         Getting a First Class upgrade on a three hour flight this week.
·         Receiving an email that American Airlines has a special promotion until the end of the year for double elite qualifying miles and points for every flight until the end of the year. Hopefully I’ll make Platinum status for next year!
·         Receiving a poor quality product from an online vendor. When they called to see if my order met my expectations and I told them that it didn’t, they offered me a merchandise credit for a future order. Love when I receive good customer service and it's initiated by the company and not me.

Friday, November 9, 2012


I mentioned yesterday that my bat phone rang and that I was headed to a new work assignment. Well, my travels have landed me in New York! The last time that I worked here I was in Buffalo, NY in 2006. Now I am working about 25 minutes outside of New York City. Hopefully I’ll be able to take in some of the sights and visit some people that I know once things get settled for me.
This morning I awoke to gas rationing being the main topic of conversation. Beginning this morning gas is being rationed based on the license plate numbers on the vehicle: if it is an odd numbered date (like today, November 9th) license plate numbers that end in an odd number (and cars with vanity plates) can get gas; on even numbered dates vehicles with license plate numbers that end in an even number can get gas. The exceptions to this are people who have portable containers to secure gas and commercial vehicles.
Of course, according to the local news, no one feels this is fair. There are lots of different situations and scenarios: What if a person doesn’t get paid until a certain date and they can’t get gas when they need it? What about people who are in sales and drive a lot? Talk about the need to plan your trips wisely!
And what’s really unbelievable is that hundreds of thousands of people still do not have power! It’s my understanding that one of the power companies on Long Island is the biggest problem as to why people don’t have power. And at this point it has been a week and a half since the storm occurred.
It’s at times like these that I realize just how much I take for granted being able to fuel up when I need to or being able to have electricity. Let’s hope that all of these problems are resolved quickly!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

All Good Things Must Come To An End

My bat phone rang yesterday and I'm headed back to work today. Between scheduled time off and being in an 'on call status' I've been home for right at 30 days which isn't too bad. Although I'll have to admit that the past 30 days have been a whirlwind for me! Between my  DC 3 Day walk, Walker Stalking at the Dallas 3 Day, and just trying to catch up on regular life things in between.

And I'm thinking that my next work assignment is going to be a whirlwind too! Especially since Superstorm Sandy did enough damage to the East Coast and now there is a Nor'easter happening too!

Stay tuned to see where I wind up...

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

My PINK Family

Hopefully you've enjoyed my past several posts about the Dallas 3 Day. (Maybe even enough to sign up to walk or volunteer one day?) As I bring things to a close I want to write a little bit about friendships.

Prior to me joining my 3 Day team, Angels for the Cure, I had never been a part of an organized team before. I didn't play sports in high school or college and my team participation has been limited to corporate America. When I joined the Angels in 2009, I never imagined the genuine friendships that I would make. And I never thought about the PINK family that I would be joining with other 3 Day participants.

I’m sure you've all heard about Superstorm Sandy that made landfall last week. I work for an insurance company with their catastrophe response division and my scheduled time off for the Dallas 3 Day was in jeopardy of being cancelled. In the end everything worked to my advantage and I was able to keep my scheduled time off. Although it’s probably hard to understand, I know that I would have been heartbroken had I not been able to be at the 3 Day this past weekend. I really wanted to be there for my team mates knowing how hard they had trained for the event, and to be able to give them the support that they needed.

Over the past few years, I have been able to meet more of my PINK family through Facebook and Twitter. I’ll be the first to admit that I was a bit hesitant to ‘friend’ people who I didn’t actually know. But the commonality that we all share is our passion to find a cure for breast cancer (which will lead to a cure for other cancers).

While at the event I had the chance to finally meet the following people:
      Mark – Mark and I first connected on Facebook through pictures that he took during the Dallas 3 Day a year or two ago. Over the past year we started following one another on Twitter. And we were finally able to meet on Day 1 of the walk! Mark's wife is also a Survivor.
Me and Mark at Opening Ceremony
·         D’Lyn – D’Lyn and I first connected over Twitter. She is a member of Team Tiara and they were promoting a website called The focus is that breast cancer isn't just the month of October and that it is every day of the year. D'Lyn also lost her mother to breast cancer. I ended up submitting my PINK story which lead me to be connected to…

Me and D'Lyn
·         Mike – Mike and I are very recent Twitter followers. Although Mike read my story on Pinktober365 and made a donation to my 3 Day account earlier this year. It wasn’t until we connected on Twitter that I put two and two together. (And on a side note, Mike made a commitment to donate to 100 walkers this year…WOW!!!)

·         Betsy – Betsy and I are also Twitter followers. And at the last minute I realized that she was in Dallas as a crew member for the 3 Day. So on the final day of the event I stopped by the pit stop she was crewing at so we could meet face to face.

·         Jay – Jay and I are Facebook, Twitter and Foursquare friends.To be honest, I can’t remember which came first or how any of it came to be. Jay and I first met face to face in DC about a month ago when I walked there. He wasn’t hard to find since he wears a pink construction hat. What I didn’t realize is that he was going to be at the Dallas 3 Day….in disguise! Jay a.k.a. Pink Man Walking walked the event in a motorcycle helmet and didn’t unveil himself until he walked into holding at the end of the walk. If I had been a bit smarter I should have figured all of this out when he took my picture at Camp on Friday night and posted it to my Facebook page!
Jay a.k.. Pink Man Walking
Believe me, I have definitely come out of my social media shell. And since I took a lot of pictures during the 3 Day and posted them to the Dallas 3 Day Facebook page, I have made some more new friends!

And just in case any of you are interested in even more random things from me, you can find me on Facebook (Shannon Underwood), Twitter (indygirl_1997) or Foursquare (indygirl_1997).

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Walker Stalking

If you’ve been following my posts for the past several days, you already know that I was at the Susan G. Komen Dallas 3 Day Walk. And yes, it was AMAZING! There’s so much to talk about that I am going to try to devote the next few days to different elements of my experience. Today is about Walker Stalking (and the only time that it is acceptable to stalk another person!).

Since I started walking the 3 Day in 2009, this was the first year that I haven’t walked in my home city of Dallas. I decided early on that I wanted to be a Walker Stalker for my team, Angels for the Cure. In case you’re wondering what a ‘Walker Stalker’ is it’s a person who’s out during the walk to cheer on the walkers as they continue on their 60 mile journey. And I had a blast! 
My official duties started early on Friday morning meeting the majority of the walkers at our team captain’s home. From there we left in a small convey to the Opening Ceremony were the official walk would begin. The energy was high while walkers were reunited with other walkers and waited for Open Ceremony to begin.

Summa and Debra on the bus

Before I knew it the walkers were off and we were cheering them out from the Opening Ceremony! On my team we had a lot of first time walkers which made me think back to my very first walk and the combination of anxiousness, fear, and happiness that I felt as I took my first steps.
My team, Angels for the Cure, before the walk started
Throughout the three days of the walk, there are seven official cheering stations for spectators to come cheer the walkers on (and countless unofficial places where people just come out to cheer on the walkers). My personal goal was to be at all of the official cheering stations from the time they started until they closed to cheer on all of the walkers. All of my team mates knew that there would be a group of team Walkers Stalkers at every cheering station in case they needed to drop off anything or pick up anything. My group of Walker Stalkers had water, Gatorade, chips, and candy for the walkers to stop by to get if they needed it. And Friday turned out to have temperatures in the high 80’s which was unseasonably warm for Dallas!

The great thing about being at the cheering stations was that by the end of the first day, I was seeing some of the same walkers over and over and they were noticing me too. It was nice because it gave me people to look forward to see (other than my team mates) and to check to see how they were doing or if they needed anything.
This is Dali supporting Angels for the Cure at a cheering station

This is Molly a.k.a. Pink Stuff. The walkers LOVED stopping by and taking pictures with her!
Before I knew it Day 1 of the walk was over and I was cheering walkers into Camp. I ended up going into Camp to see my team mates and have dinner with them too. By time I left camp, it was 9 p.m. And by time I was able to stop at the store to get more Gatorade, rearrange my car, and get myself something to eat it was around midnight before I went to bed. Whew! Talk about a long, yet exciting day!
On Days 2 (and 3) I got up early to cheer the walkers out of camp. It was great to see the walkers first thing and wish them a strong day of walking. Especially since Day 2 is typically a longer route and the hardest day for the walkers. I was also able to get some great shots of them as they started their day and give out lots of hugs!
Day 2 was probably as hot as Day 1 of the walk. My group of team Walker Stalkers had even more water and Gatorade to pass out, and we were making a point to let the walkers know we had it. Thankfully the 3 Day is one big family and we share things with all walkers, not just our team mates.
On day 2 I did have a chance to drive the route a bit to cheer on walkers form my car. I ended up stopping about a mile from the camp site to cheer walkers in for their final mile of the day. Remembering how tough Day 2 has been for me, I knew the extra cheer would go a long way. There was a small group of us cheering, and you could see the walkers spirits lift when they saw us.
A Mother and Daughter Team that I met on Day 1. Here they are gettin ready for their last mile on Day 2 of the walk.
Finally Day 3 was here! Day 3 is great since its shorter route miles and the walkers know that the end of their journey is near. My team had a private cheering station along the route, and we had a pretty good turnout of family and friends for it. My former manager even came out, and I think she might have been bitten with the 3 Day bug as she is talking about actually walking next year!
I went to the very end of the route to cheer my team in to the Holding Area. I was beyond proud when I saw them all walk in together and the big smiles on their faces. As I started to cheer them in and hug them, the tears started out of happiness for them. Believe me, it’s hard not to get emotional watching the entire group of walkers walk in knowing how much they have gone through with training for the walk, actually walking 60 miles, walking through blisters and other injuries, and whatever their personal connection to breast cancer might be.

I’ll have to admit that I might be bitten by the Walker Stalker bug! I think that it’s a great way to show love and support to the other walkers. And I’m already thinking about doing it again next year. Instead of walking two cities every year, I think I’m going to focus on always cheering on the walkers in Dallas, and then walking in another city.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Dallas/Ft. Worth SGK 3 Day Walk - Day 3

Here are some pictures from Day 3 of the walk...
Me and Smooch waiting for Day 3 to begin so we can cheer on the walkers!

Me and my Twitter friend Dy'Lyn, I was so happy to finally meet her at the walk!
Me and Kim a.k.a Pinky


Showing off our bras!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Dallas/Ft. Worth SGK 3 Day Walk - Day 2

Just a few pictures from Day 2 of the walk....
Me and my Walker Stalker mobile are ready!
Maryiln, Dr. Sheri Phillips (National Spokesperson for the 3 Day) and me at one of the cheering stations
Tina, Smooch and Dayzee - three of my wonderful team mates ready to cheer on some walkers!
A mother and daughter team that I had the pleasure of meeting on Day 1, and cheered them all through Day 2. This picture was a mile from the end of the day for them. Fabulous ladies!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Dallas/Ft. Worth SGK 3 Day Walk - Day 1

Just a few pictures that I took from Day 1 at the SGK Dallas/Ft. Worth Walk!
This picture sums up what the 3 Day Family is about....we have big hearts and we take the walk one step at a time. It's so cool how the walkers, crew, and spectatorsare brought together for three days of kindness and pinkness!
Me and my new friend Lollie. She's a beautiful Labordoodle who belongs to the family of one of my team mates. And yes, she LOVED posing for pictures with EVERYONE!

Two of my wonderful team mates Smooch and Cheryl! They were out cheering everyone on. Love these ladies!

 The pink sparkle bra makes its debut! And yes, there were a few photo opps involved too!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Yay, The Big Day is Finally Here!


I know you clicked over to my page today to see what’s new. But guess what? I’m at the Dallas/Ft. Worth Susan G. Komen 3-Day Walk! So come back next week so I can let you know how everything went. In the meantime I will check in every day and try to give you some highlights or pictures.

And surely you want to know how my pink sparkle bra went over with everyone! (And yes, those are owls on my bra. Hooters, get it?!)

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Wait For It...

A lot of people don’t know that I have limited (and I mean very limited!) patience. I don’t try to hide the fact, although people in my professional life always seem to comment that I am a very patient person. What I think they confuse it with is that I’m not easily excited and I remain pretty calm in most situations. Well yesterday was a day to try my patience…

As you probably know Susperstorm Sandy made landfall a couple of days ago. And since I work for an insurance company with their catastrophe response division this means that a work assignment is pretty imminent for me. Well, I also have vacation scheduled beginning today through next Tuesday for the Dallas 3-Day Walk. (And I’ll also mention that my time off has been scheduled since last fall) Just like clockwork my manager contacts me to inquire about my upcoming time off. And to make a long story short, he was going to contact me before the end of day to let me know if I would need to cancel my vacation request and if I would be sent on an assignment within the next couple of days.
Guess what?

Yep, he never called me back before the end of my typical business day. So, I did send him a message that I will make one last ditch effort to contact him this morning to see what my status is. So now do you see why my patience has been tried? Hopefully all will work out well so that I can be here for the 3-Day (or at least one day of it!) and leave at the beginning of the week. I’ll keep you posted…
On another note…

When I started writing about patience it made me think of another work related story. Several years ago I worked in a department where the department secretary would send out status updates when there was a hardware or software problem. She would end each email with ‘Thanks for your patients!’ After seeing this same sign off about a thousand times, one day I decided to tell her about improper word choice. I explained to her that ‘patients’ are people in the hospital and ‘patience’ is what she would like for all of us to have regarding the hardware or software problem (and what I had been demonstrating every time she sent an email). All I can say is that unfortunately (and sadly) she never understood the difference.
I know, real random right?

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Technically it is October 31st so I guess that makes it Halloween. Although to be honest, I’ve never really been a big fan of Halloween. I mean aside from the candy there’s really nothing that exciting about the day to me.

I don’t really remember being excited about dressing up as something as a kid. And I’m really not excited about dressing up as something as an adult. Although when I see people with interesting costumes, I am somewhat amazed with their creativity. And then there are the other group. The group that walks the fine line that begs me to ask “Is that a costume or what you’re really wearing?” I saw several of those people out this past weekend.
Although I haven’t talked about it much on my blog, I have been working on a costume of sorts for the upcoming Dallas 3-Day Walk. During the DC 3-Day Walk I debuted a tutu that I made. (Yes, I made it myself!) And I decided to add to it for the upcoming Dallas walk. Through all of this I have learned something: I don’t have the patience for arts and crafts!

I really thought the tutu would take an evening to make. It turned into a two evening instead. The other night I was working on signs (ok, onesign) for the walk. One sign took me the better part of four hours to make! And I’ll be honest that this isn’t a sign that is going to win any awards. I just underestimated how long it would take me to stencil out letters, cut them out, and then place them on poster board. The lesson learned here is that maybe stencils aren’t to be used to cut out letters. I probably should have stenciled the letters on to the poster board and then filled them in with glitter or something else.
Well, yesterday I decided to begin working on a sparkle bra for the Dallas walk. And I really thought I was up for the challenge. Let’s just say that after spending at least three hours gluing sequins on a bra cup that I’m not even half way done with the project. And to add insult to injury, I thought two 800 packs of sequins would be enough to cover both cups. Well, as of right now I have gone through one package and I only have about ¾ of a cup covered! (At this point you might be wondering just how big the cups are. Well let’s just say that I my‘girls’ are really women!)

Hopefully the sparkle bra will be completed today. And yes, once it is I will post a picture for you to see it. And let’s also hope that I don’t have any Trick or Treaters stop by either since I haven’t picked up any candy. At this point all I can give them is a pear or string cheese.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


This past weekend was a pretty good weekend for me to catch up with friends. As much as I enjoy doing things with other people it can sometimes be a bit of overload for me which causes me to retreat into my own little world.

On Saturday I was able to get together with a friend who has been in town for business. She and I first met about 7 years ago due to the job that I have now. And amazingly she and I have been able to see each other a couple of times a year in spite of living in different states. Recently she received a job promotion which gave us even more reason to celebrate being able to see one another!
On Sunday morning I met up with my 3-Day walking team for breakfast after their training walk. (And yes, I probably should have met them for the training walk!) It was good to see all of their excitement about the upcoming Dallas/Ft. Worth 3-Day walk this weekend. Although I decided not to walk Dallas this year, I will be out there cheering them on each step of the way (also known as a Walker Stalker!).

After that one of the ladies and I went to Wal-Mart to pick up a few items that I needed for my Walker Stalking duties. From there, I kind of invited myself to go to a soccer game with her. Even though it was a bit windy and cool we had a good time catching up. From there we ended up at lunch and met two 3-Day walkers sitting at the table next to us!
And my Sunday ended with calling another friend to gossip about something that I saw on Facebook! (Facebook can be good for something I guess) And I always say that men gossip more than women do since he already knew the back story on what I was calling him about!

What I realized this weekend is that I have a pretty eclectic group of friends. I honestly don’t know how well they would ‘mix’ with one another since we all have become friends from different situations. All I can say that I am pretty lucky to have a great group of friends!

Monday, October 29, 2012


First, I’d like to say ‘THANK YOU’ to the new readers that have recently found my blog! Over the past week I have received comments on my posts (which I love!) which lets me know that someone other than myself (and maybe my family) is reading my blog!

I’ll admit that I follow all of my blogs in a reader which places them all in one space (and I won’t say how many blogs I read either!). The downside is: I don’t get to see the fancy layouts of blogs; the blogger may or may not know that I am actually reading their blog on a regular basis; and it’s not as easy for me to comment on their posts (ok, maybe I’m just being lazy but not going to actual blog to comment).
One of the comments I received is that I make blogging look easy. At least I have one person fooled! Seriously, I love blogging yet it can be pretty time consuming. (I’m sure my regular followers already know that I can fall off the grid from time to time when my professional life gets hectic) And I have the mentality that if I’m going to do something, I’m going to do it right. So I like to take the time with writing my posts, adding pictures, and making certain that my actual blog is visually appealing. (So, for those who are reading me in a reader, please go check out my actual blog!)

I’m also lucky that my life is a bit interesting from time to time which gives me something to write about. For those who don’t know, by day I work for an insurance company with their catastrophe response division. (And yes, that might be a hint that my life may get hectic due to Hurricane Sandy and her antics!) This means I travel a LOT, eat out a LOT, and meet a LOT of interesting people along the way. And when I’m not on a work assignment (which isn’t as often as I would like) I have a great family and group friends (who’ll probably say they don’t see me as often as they would like) that I hang out with, I enjoy personal travel, and I always seem to have something going on.

I’d like to take my blogging to the next level. For me that means acquiring my own domain and creating a personal brand across all of my social media outlets. I’m slowly getting there…and if you have any helpful hints to help me get there, please let me know!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Taking The First Step

I've learned that taking the first step is always the hardest. I've decided to take the first step again with Weight Watchers.

Earlier this year during Lent I decided that I wanted to adopt some healthy eating habits. What ended up happening was that I decided to give up meat. And since that time I have continued to be a non-meat eater with the exception of seafood (also known as a pescatarian). What also happened is that I didn't take into consideration what I should or shouldn't eat, which has resulted in additional weight gain for me. So now, I am at my personal breaking point of trying to lose all of my unwanted weight once and for all.

A friend who I work with has also been struggling with weight loss. For her, it was joining Weight Watchers earlier this year with her cousin. Her cousin has had great success and has lost over 80 pounds...AMAZING! My friend? Her weight loss hasn't been then great and it also seems to be in a yo-yo phase - up and down, up and down. She is also diabetic which presents additional challenges for her.

So my friend (who I'll call 'L') and I decided to do a mini weight loss goal with one another: lose 25 pounds by the end of January (which also happens to be to time of our annual department meeting). This is a realistic goal since Weight Watchers states a healthy weight loss is 1/2 to 2 pounds per week.

So that's why I decided last week week to take another first step with Weight Watchers. I have had success with Weight Watchers before, and I believe I can have success again. I also know that I will be home for the next several weeks from any work assignments which will give me a good foundation to implement new eating habits. I also have my 3-Day training behind me. I struggle with training for the 3-Day and eating. For some reason I seem to think that I can eat anything that I want if I'm walking 20+ miles a week.

I already know this won't be an easy journey for me. I also know that I can achieve anything that I put my mind to too!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

SGK Washington, DC Walk – Day 3

After accepting a little bit of defeat on Day 2, I woke up ready for Day 3 of the walk!
Day 3 is here and I'm ready!!!
Me and some of my team mates waiting for the Day 3 route to open.
The nice thing about Day 3 of the walk is that the mileage is a little bit less to ensure that everyone will make it to the end of the walk in time for Closing Ceremony. There is also a certain level of energy and excitement knowing that the 60 miles is almost over and the impact that I’ve made.
A lot of the Day 3 route covered portions of the city that we had previously walked on Day 1 and 2. Although I never really thought about it, geographically Washington, DC isn’t that big. I really didn’t mind re-walking certain parts since the city is so beautiful!
One of my biggest surprises of the day was that a friend of mine who lives in the area came out to cheer me on and was at the first cheering station!
Claire, Willis, and Me
I can’t explain how good it felt to see a friendly, familiar face out in the crowd! With the exception of my walk in Tampa last year, I have been fortunate to have family and friends attend my walks which does my heart (and feet!) a world of good.
A couple of other unknown people who did my heart good were these two gentlemen:
I have no idea what their names are, although I know that that I saw them from Day 1 when the walk started all the way until the end of Day 3 when the walk ended. So I had to stop and take a picture with them. The gentleman on the left told me that his wife and daughter were walking and they were out to support them.
I walked behind this sign attached to a walker for awhile:

 Can you believe that she is a 3 time survivor out walking a 3 day, 60 mile walk?! Amazing! Although I didn't talk to her when I snapped the picture, I did see her later at a Pit Stop. I had to go over that I had read her sign earlier and how happy I wass that she was here with us walking.
Before I knew it I was quickly approaching the end of the walk. And guess who was at the finish waiting for me?
Me, Willis, and Claire at the Finsh!
It was great walking across the finish with all of my Angels for the Cure team mates who walked DC. At every walk, The Angels walk into the finish together. Although I never mentioned it, I walked this walk with my friend Claire and this was her first time walking. and honestly, I don't think this will be her last walk.

Closing Ceremony was just as emotional for me as Opening Ceremony. It is so hard to put into words all of the emotions that I felt. I thought about my family and friends who have battled this disease. I thought about all of the people I walk 'In Honor Of' and 'In Memory Of' with their names attached to hearts on my fanny pack. As we gave a One Shoe Salute to the Survivors, I thoughts about all of the Survivors that I know and who walked with me the past three days.

One Shoe Salute to Survivors
And as the Survivors Flag was raised and waved in the wind with the words 'We Will Never Give Up', I thought about the impact that I have made and that I can't stop walking until a cure is found.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

SGK Washington, DC Walk – Day 2

Little did I know how difficult Day 2 of the walk was going to be! Partially due to my training being inconsistent this year and mainly due to HILLS! Hills and LOTS of them!

I never thought about DC being a hilly city. (Ok, yes I have heard of Capitol Hill, although…I didn’t realize it is an actual hill until I walked it!) The most deceiving part is that the hills are long and slow gradual inclines and they last about 2 miles before leveling off and only to start again.
The great thing is that our Walker Stalkers were at our first cheering station of the day!
Angels for the Cure - Walkers and Walker Stalkers
After switching our accommodations, we realized that our hotel was only about a ½ mile from the first cheering station and that much of the Day 2 walk was in walking distance for our Walker Stalkers. This was great since parking is a premium in DC and it allowed the Walker Stalkers to get in some training miles for their upcoming Dallas 3-Day Walk.
Once we arrived at lunch, my feet and legs were really feeling the toll of walking the hills. So I decided that I would take a sweep van to the next Pit Stop and catch up with my team there. Although I hated to take the sweep van, I knew that it was important for me to be able to save my feet for the miles ahead of me. And little did I know that I would end up taking the sweep van again to take me to Camp for the end of the day. I’ll be honest, this is my 6th 3-Day event and I have learned to listen to my body (ok, my feet!). And there’s no shame in taking a sweep van especially if continuing on might result in an unnecessary injury.
I almost forgot! At the end of Day 1, I did check the Camp Post Office and I had mail and Sweet Treats from family and friends! I have to admit that the mail is one of the highlights of the event although I typically don't provide my family and friends with the address to send me mail. It's nice to know that people are thinking of me and their words of encouragement really help to get me through the miles.