Saturday, March 31, 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):

·         An impromptu office poll that revealed way too many people talk on their cellphone or home phone while in the restroom AND don’t see a problem with it. Ugh! Note to self: don’t use anyone’s cellphone anymore! (And just in case you missed my initial thoughts about restroom cellphone talking here's a link for you)
·         My stepfather and stepmother both experienced complications with their recent surgical procedures and had to seek medical attention. Fortunately they are both doing fine again.
·         Realizing that I have waaaay toooo many TV shows set to record on my DVR. When I was home for the weekend, I had to delete some recorded shows and cancel some series altogether. Sigh.
·         Realizing that at least one person in my current office agrees with me that talking on a cellphone phone while in the restroom is a NO-NO!!!
·         Using the first class upgrades that I earned to fly first class this week!
·         Being warmly welcomed back by my co-workers after taking the past weekend off. I don’t know if my replacement was just that bad or if they really did miss me and my winning personality.
·         Officially starting my 3-Day fundraising! After sending out the initial email to previous (and hopefully future) donors, I generated $520 in donations in less than 24 hours!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Tribute to a Friend

Last week ended with unexpected news of a friend's untimely death. My friend is someone that I know through my company, and that I maintain contact with via Facebook and Four Square. It wasn't until several months ago that I learned that he is best friends with another person that I have recently become good friends with.

My friend made the decision to take his own life.

What I struggle with is that everything is not always as it seems in someones life. In order for him to have done this, he must have been hurting inside very much. Whenever I saw him, he always had a big smile on his face and could always make me laugh. And from the many pictures that have appeared on his Facebook page, this is a similar memory that many people shared with him. Within the past year he moved to a state that he loved (what's not to love about Colorado?), purchased a new car, and had recently shared with me the excitement and nervousness that he had about meeting someone during an upcoming trip to Florida.

I still remember how he and I met. We were both on a work assignment in Ohio after Hurricane Ike moved its way across the country. After initially meeting, his name sounded familiar to me, but I couldn't figure out why. All I knew was that he would stop by to chat when he could, always had a smile for me, and made me laugh. He was a genuine person with a kind spirit. It wasn't until I had a long weekend off and traveled home that I finally realized why his name was familiar to me: he and I had written stories for a book published by our company entitled "Our Stories", which is a collection of stories by members of the LGBT community and their allies. I had submitted a story about my best friend and when he came out to me; my friend had submitted a story about his coming out.

I may never know the reason my friend took his life. Instead I'm just thankful for the time that I knew him and the impact that he made on my life.

Saturday, March 24, 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):


  • A friend committed suicide. Still trying to understand how someone who appeared so happy and full of life decided to take their own life. Sometimes people are dealing with so much more than their outward life appears. He will be greatly missed by so many people.
  • The absolutely beautiful weather Indianapolis has been experiencing! Unseasonably warm weather in the 70's and record breaking temps.
  • My stepfather being released from the hospital after his heart transplant 3 weeks ago!
  • Having dinner with a friend who I haven't seen in 7 years! The conversation was easy and it was like no time at all had passed since we last saw one another. And since I will be in Indy for several more weeks we should be able to get together a few more times.
  • The lady/mother of two who shared the available washing machines with me at the hotel laundr facility. Although I thanked her profusley, I don't think she had any idea how much that meant to me.
  • Even in the mist of tradegy and loss, awesome things can still happen.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

You Wanna Do What?

Since 2009 I have been walking in the Susan G. Komen 3 Day for the Cure. And since that time all of my family and friends have probably heard a lot more about ‘The Walk’ than they have wanted to.  This year I have been blown away that a few of my friends have approached me about walking this year!
I know it might not sound like a big deal, but to me it is. The 3 Day has become so important to me for a few reasons. One, the awareness that the event creates is just amazing, and early detection is key with curing breast cancer. The 3 Day has also made me feel connected to something. When I moved to Dallas, I only knew a few people and I wasn’t involved in community events like I had been before making my current career choice.  I now have this amazing PINK family and my circle of friends grows through it.
I think I am even more amazed that somehow I have influenced my friends to want to be a part of the 3 Day. I do my best to tell them the good, the bad and the ugly about the event in order for them to make an informed decision. And to be honest, I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I decided to walk my first year. All I knew is that once I had walked my last step into Closing Ceremony that I would be back again the following year. It certainly helped me to join a team that had members who had previously walked the event to answer all of my questions (and I had a lot of questions!).
One friend, A, did walk with me last year. Overall I think she was amazed by the event itself, yet she’ll probably admit that she could have trained a bit more than she did. I do my best to let my friends know that training makes the walk better, and they’ll still feel some aches and pains once it’s all over. But the aches and pains pale in comparison to the feeling they’ll have once the walk is finished.
So if you’re thinking about walking the 3 Day, let me know! I would love to answer any questions that you might have. And I’ll let you know later which of my friends decide to walk with me this year!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Spring, My Favorite Time of the Year

When I was called for a work assignment to Indiana in the month of March, I immediately packed sweaters, long sleeved shirts, and even a pair of boots. Little did I know I had 70+ degree weather in my future. Since a few short days after arriving here, the weather has been absolutely gorgeous! 
Spring is probably my most favorite time of the year. (Yes, my birthday is in April but that’s not completely the reason!) I love to watch everything come back to life – the trees began to grow leaves, the grass begins turning green, and flowers begin to pop up out of the earth getting ready to bloom. It’s always amazing to me to watch the transformation.

With good weather, it also makes it easier for me to want to get out more and begin walking. Thankfully last week I found a walking buddy at work and we have been walking in the evening. And since daylight savings time is in effect, we can get in about an hour’s worth of walking before it turns dusk on us. Sure beats going back to a hotel room that has a limited TV lineup (and you already know how much I like TV!).
Since I work for an insurance company, and the activity in the department I work in is based on weather activity, I can’t help but think about “March in like a lamb, out like a lion.” All of this great weather sometimes doesn’t create the best cocktail for Mother Nature. (So I guess that means that when there is bad weather, Mother Nature had a drink that didn’t agree with her. Hee, hee, hee)
So here’s too more great walking weather, beautiful flowers, and hoping Mother Nature holds her liquor a little better!

Saturday, March 17, 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):

  • Working in a mobile trailer that is probably designed to have 3, maybe 4, people in it at any given time, and having to share it with 7 people. And let's not forget the number of people who are in and out of it all day smelling of fresh air and the warm food smells that come from the garbage that is supposed to be used for recycling.
  • Purchasing an air fresher for my portion of the trailer and have people ask, "Did you really purchase an air freshener?!" I think the look on my face gave them the answer they needed.
  • The previously mentioned trailer doesn't have a bathroom. Instead of using the port-o-potties I walk across the parking lot to use Lowe's facilities. I figure my company pays them enough for the parking lot space for the trailer that I should be able to use the restroom.  (P.S. - I don't use random port-o-potties. The only time I use a port-o-potty is during the 3 Day!)
  • Having breakfast at one of my favorite Indy spots, Cafe Patachou. I drove to one a location a little further away because I liked the atmosphere, only to arrive and find it it has totally been redesigned! It has expanded in size, has lots of windows and natural light, and these big chalkboard walls! Way cool interior and the food was a great as I remembered it!
  • Taking an hour walk with a friend that I haven't seen in about 6 years! It was great to enjoy the beautiful, unseasonably warm weather Indianapolis is experiencing right now, and catch up with a friend while doing something healthy!
  • Leaving Lowe's after my potty run and having a man tell me, "Wow, you are beautiful!" Definitely made my day since I wasn't feeling any part of beautiful that day.

Friday, March 16, 2012


Wow, I can hardly believe that it is Friday! Working 6 days a week, 12 hours a day really makes the week fly by. To be honest, all I am looking forward to is Saturday a.k.a my 7th day off. Other than an eyebrow waxing appointment (with the wonderful lady that I used to do my waxing when I lived in Indianapolis before), I don't have anything planned and that's the way I want it.

I always feel so bad when I leave for a work assignment because my blog suffers. I was feeling so good about posting nearly every day. Then work steps in, and I am down to posting 2 or 3 times a week. I need to find a better balance for blogging while working. I mean other bloggers do it, why can't I?

Anyway, thanks for hanging in there with me. I promise I'll be back on the top of my game in no time at all. In the meantime, if you have some helpful hints to help me balance, please let me know! Oh yeah, enjoy your weekend, too!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Tuesday TV

Just when I didn't think that I could add anything else to my TV show line up, I found more shows to add!

One of my guilty pleasures is purchasing gossip magazines(People, Life & Style, and US Weekly) to read when flying on an airplane. During my last flight I found some new additions for my DVR:
  • Interior Therapy with Jeff Lewis - a couple of days ago I already wrote about my love of Jeff Lewis. Although his new show doesn't appear that it will be like Flippin' Out, I still think the Jeff I know and love won't disappoint with his quick wit and comments.
  • Shahs of Sunset - yet another BRAVO show added to the line up. This show is about Persians living the fabulous life in Beverly Hills. I'm sure it will be a similar in format to The Real Housewives... series. Can't wait!
  • Missing - An ABC show about a mother looking to find her son. I'll admit the main draw is Ashley Judd since I am a huge fan of hers. We'll how long this shows lasts.
  • Fashion Star - I don't know how long this show will keep my attention. After researching it a bit more, I think this might be like Project Runway, which unfortunately doesn't do much for me.
And if that wasn't enough, I realized that one of my favorite shows, Fairly Legal, begins its new season this week. The shows main charter, Kate Reed (played by Sarah Shahi) was a lawyer who decided to become a mediator in her father's business after he died unexpectedly. To make thinks more interesting, she has a stepmother who doesn't appear to be too much older than her, and she is has an interesting relationship with her soon-to-be ex-husband. Kate Reed's character is fun and the story line is pretty good too. If you ever watched the L Word on showtime, Sarah Shahi played a charter named Carmen.

I know you might be wondering, 'Just how much space does her DVR have?' I'm probably pressing the limits right about now, especially since I'll be away from home the next few weeks.

What are are some of your favorite TV shows?
(Seriosuly, I'm just curious...obviously I already watch too much TV as it is!)

Monday, March 12, 2012

A Day Off

Wow, it has been a looooong week!

Whenever I am sent to a new work assignment, the first week is always the hardest week for me. One reason is because I work 12+ hours per day. So it's kind of like going from zero to 95 mph really, really quick! Over the past five days, I have worked over 60 hours.

When I finally get my first day off it's the best feeling. EVER. For me, it means sleeping in and not waking up to an alarm. But of course I awoke at 5:15 a.m., but I didn't have a problem with running to the bathroom and getting right back to bed and sleep mode. When I did finally wake up, it was 11 a.m. and I was completely fine with that.

I did a quick assessment of my hotel room, and began to get it in order. Since I won't be changing hotels, I went ahead and unpacked my suitcases. Not that my closet is that big...

Looks like a regular size closet...'s a half size closet!
Since landing in Indy I knew that on my day off I was going to Cafe Patachou for breakfast. Although I arrived around 1 p.m., the place was still packed. I ended up taking a seat at the counter so I was able to get right in. I decided to have my all time favorite breakfast served there...yogurt topped with Cafe Patachou granola and fresh berries, cinnamon toast, and a honey steamer.

Oh my, it was waaaaaaay better than I remembered! The granola they make is so light and fresh, and just the right amount of sweetness. I like it because it's crisp and really compliments the berries and yogurt. The cinnamon toast...I'll go on record with saying it is the best that I ever had. It starts with a hearty white bread that is toasted and then slathered with butter and cinnamon sugar.

After leaving Cafe Patachou, I decided to drive around a bit through an area that has older historical homes that I always liked. As I drove around, I slowly remembered where I was going. Although it was a bit frustrating to think of a place and not remember the name of it. Hopefully before my next day off I'll figure out some other places that I want to visit.

After returning to the hotel, I had laundry to do and just get myself mentally ready for the week ahead. Oh, and I did I mention the time changes early on Sunday morning? I already went from Central time to Eastern time so I lost an hour. And now, not even a week later, the time changes and I lose another hour! My body is going to be so confused. That why I'm hitting the hay early so I don't pay for it tomorrow.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Awkward and Awesome

Here's my awkward and awesome moments for the week (Inspired by E from E is Random who was inspired by Sydney at The Daybook):

  • Purchasing tabloid magazines at the airport and not having a penny when the total came to $8.01. Of course I didn't have a penny (I changed purses the night before) and no one offered me one. Now I have 99 cents in change floating around in my purse.
  • Being called for my next work assignment after being home for only 3 days after the previous work assignment ended. Although it's awkward, I am thankful to have a job.
  • Paying $3.59/gallon for gas! And that was with a 10 cent/gallon discount.
  • Working in a small mobile RV. A minimum of 7 people in it at all times, the door opening and slamming close every minute, and it smells like a combination of food in a trash car and people being outdoors. Need I say more?
  • Getting a first class upgrade on my flight this week! Two hours of uninterrupted time to my self to be lost with my thoughts. And the California Cobb Salad was pretty good too!
  • Returned to one of the cities that I previously lived in, Indianapolis, Indiana. I was last in the city 5 years ago. It was such a great feeling to see the city and new landmarks as the plane descended. And I saw one of my favorite restaurants, Cafe Patachou in the airport...that will be a stop for the return trip home!
  • Wearing my Sparkle Ugg boots and getting lots of compliments from men ("I like your pretty boots.") and women. (See Mom, I told you that I would wear them.)

Thursday, March 8, 2012

He's Baaaaaaaaaaack!!!

Some of my closest friends know that I love, love, LOVE Jeff Lewis! Every since I saw my first episode of Flipping Out, I became the biggest Jeff Lewis fan. I feel like he's my alter ego...he's says whatever is on his mind. And if I could find the nerve to say whatever was on my mind, I would be the female version of Jeff Lewis. And he's soooooo handsome.

My personal favorite pic!
And yes, he does smile. But I like this look.

Imagine my disappointment when I realized he's gay (as if I had a chance with him, now I really don't have a chance!).  But how can you not fall in love with those eyes, those lips...

I digress...

Anyway, I'm such a fan that I even bidded on a portrait of Jeff. During one of his season, he had a self portrait that hung on the wall behind him. (I think he loves himself too!). He decided to sell it and give the proceeds to two animal rescue charities, and well, I had to bid on it. Unfortunately I didn't win, but I can still look at the picture:

Well, Jeff is back with a new show 'Interior Therapy with Jeff Lewis'. Can't wait to see Jeff next week. If you're interested in seeing what my fascination is with Jeff, tune into Bravo TV next Wednesday!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

On The Road To...

Indianapolis, IN!

This past Saturday as I was on my out the door to meet a friend who recently relocated to the Big D for lunch, the dreaded 'Bat Phone' (a.k.a. my company cell phone) rang. I can't say that I was surprised since 1) I work for an insurance company in their catastrophe response division and 2) some very bad tornadoes had touched down and did tremendous amounts of damage the previous two days.

The good news (if there can be good news in spite of devastation) was that I was being sent to Indianapolis. In case I have never mentioned it before, Indianapolis is a city that I lived in for 8 years. For me moving to Indy, marked a lot of things in my life...I was newly married and starting what I considered my first real job with real pay. Although the marriage didn't last, I am still working for the same company.

While I lived in Indy, I met a lot of friends (who I am planning to see as soon as things slow down a bit) and I really enjoyed living here. Indy is about 3 hours from where my family lives, so it made it a lot easier to travel home for a weekend. Indy is also a great small large city. Meaning...although the city is metropolitan, it is very easy to get around. The city hosts major sporting events (basketball, football), has lots of cultural events, and is a great place no matter if you're single, married, or have children.

So for me, returning to Indy is like returning home...returning to someplace that I know and that feels comfortable. I enjoyed flying in and looking at the city and the new landmarks (JW Marriott and Lucus Oil Stadium). When I arrived at the new airport,I immediately saw a Cafe Patachou which was one of my favorite breakfast spots when I lived here. And driving to my hotel, I passed places and streets that brought back memories.

This is the first time that I will say that I hope my work assignment lasts a good while. Being here feels like cuddling up in a chair with a blanket and a great book with a nice hot cup of chai tea to sip on. For me, it doesn't get too much better than that!

Monday, March 5, 2012


The March NaBloPoMo question for Friday was about choices: Would I rather make my own choices or have someone make them for me?

Well, anyone who knows me (and I mean barely knows me), knows that I like to make my own choices. Every since I can remember, I have been pretty independent and like to make my own choices. I can still remember meeting an Army recruiter in one of my classes my freshman year of college. I enjoyed talking to him and even contemplated considering the military. When I talked to my Dad about it, I can still remember him saying "You don't like for me to tell you what to do. What makes you think you'll want someone else telling what to do, when to do it and how to do it?" Ah, he knows me so well.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Awkward and Awesome

I noticed an 'Awarkward and Awesome' post on one of the blogs that I follow. Inspired by E from E is Random who was inspired by Sydney at The Daybook. Here's my try at my awkward and awesome moments for the week:

  • Being over 1,000 miles away from my family this week while two step-parents had major surgeries.
  • Breaking a fingernail just when all my nails were where I wanted them.
  • Contacting my manager about applying for a different position. Mainly awkward since she recently offered me a different opportunity within my department and I haven't given her a response yet. The offer still pends as some final details are still pending.
  • Watching Kacie B. from The Bachelor lay on a hotel floor after Ben sent her on her way for the second time.
  • My stepfather receiving a heart donor for his heart transplant.
  • My stepmother had her breast reconstruction surgery from her fight with breast cancer.
  • Applying for a job at my company that I think I would be perfect for.
  • Finally scheduling a lunch meet up with a friend who relocated to the Dallas Metroplex.
  • Absolutely beautiful spring days in Dallas this week! I wish it were like this all the time!

Friday, March 2, 2012


How fitting that the March NaBloPoMo prompt for yesterday would be about uncertainty: How do you feel about uncertainty? Is it exciting or scary?

Earlier today I decided to apply for a different position within my company. After speaking to my manager about the position and doing some research on my own, I decided that I would apply. When applying for any position, I only think of myself as my competition. I don't worry or think about who else might apply. With this current opening, I feel that I have great qualifications that will make me  a very competitive candidate for this position. It wasn't until I submitted the needed form that I began to have doubts.

I work for a large company in the insurance and financial services industry. One of the big pushes at my company is for continuing education to obtain an insurance designation. Although insurance designations are highly regarded in the insurance industry, they aren't so much in the non-insurance world. And, although I work for an insurance company, the positions that I have held are not insurance specific such as a claims adjuster or insurance agent. Hence, why I focused on educational opportunities that would benefit me in any industry.

After submitting my interest in the position, I began to feel uncertain about my qualifications since I don't have an insurance designation. (This position is not insurance specific either) Although I have stood by what I believe in to be important as far as education, I am now wondering how my choice will impact me professionally. Believe me, I know about the checklists that are used to wade through potential candidates. (Yes, I worked in Human Resources once upon a time)

So, how do I feel about uncertainty? Right now it's a good mixture of exciting and scary. Exciting for the opportunities this new position would bring, and scary because it would create a big change in my life. Right now, I am looking at both of those things as positives. Bring it on!