Saturday, August 28, 2010

Californ-I-A

I just returned from a short, but nice family vacation/business trip (for the parentals anyway) to San Diego.



It was our 3rd trip to the city and I had a great time.  The only unfortunate thing was that the trip was somewhat shorter than I realized so we didn't have much time to do the "Tourist" thing.  After poring over the guidebooks and brochures, I realized that San Diego has a lot to offer in the way of shopping, art, and education, but I couldn't con my family into joining me at the San Diego Zoo when we've already gone there once.  It was ten years ago and I don't remember it, but technically they're right.  We've done most of the touristy things that the city has to offer.  Belmont, the Zoo, Coronado, La Jolla, and the Gaslamp Quarter.  So instead, this was more of a relaxing time in a new(-ish) place.  

Things I loved about this vacation: 

1) Lounging by the pool in (and this is the important part) virtually no humidity.  It was a really nice change for this South Florida girl to be able to comfortably lay out in the sun without needing to cool off (or rinse off from the sweat).  I loved correcting people when they assumed that San Diego was "just like home" when I told them that I was from Florida.

"No," I assured them.  "It gets cold here."


2) Dining outside in the city.  People-watching never fails to entertain me.  I saw a pretty legit pimpmobile and people smoking pot out in the open.  Living the American Dream.

Actual magazine ads
3) Taking a sunset sail.  It was very relaxing and the city is beautiful at all stages: Daylight, Dusk, and Night


4) Top of the Hyatt.  While the Manchester Grand Hyatt didn't impress me too much, one thing they did right was the bar at 40 stories up.  I had an Amaretto Sour (my favorite drink) and enjoyed the view while I sipped at it.


I had a great time, even if it wasn't the most exciting trip I've ever taken.  I'm sure I'll return to the city again someday, and when I do, I'm determined to be a better tourist and make it more exciting.


Friday, August 20, 2010

Alumna Times

Want to know how you know you've been a sucky blogger?

When you log in to the wrong Blogger account and have a mild heart attack when you think the blog that you put most of your time and effort into has somehow been purged.

Well.  Now that I'm recovered from that brief panic attack, let's move on.

I've been busy this week doing the sorority alumna thing.  Panhellenic recruitment at UCF was (and is-- it's still ongoing) this week and the week was kicked off for us with an Alumnae Tea.

Me with 2 of my closest sisters,
pretending to sit in chapter order
The active sisters performed their door songs for recruitment, showed us the Video Knight video, and went through the pref ceremony.  It was beautifully done and several alum (myself included) teared up.

Throughout the week we've been in and out of the Sigma Chi house (our chapter is unhoused, so we rent the house for the duration of rush to recruit out of).  I went around my work schedule.

It's fun being an alum. You don't have to deal with the stress or heat, or variety of difficult to easy conversation. We hang out with actives taking breaks, other alum, some of the boys that are running in and out of their home.  We also run a ton of errands.

It was surprisingly fun.

But, now I'm pretty much done.  I have to go back to work and all that jazz.

It's weird to be separated from the chapter that way, but I know that being involved as an alum is still going to be fun.  My Kappa experience and memories will always be enough to make me tear up when I think about it. It changed me as a person-- in a good way.



In the years after with tears and with laughter, 
we'll always remember our dear Kappa days.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Adventures in St. Augustine.

A long time ago, in 8th grade, I went to St. Augustine with my best friend.  We both had different best friends at the time, but we still "ran in the same circle."  We went to St. Augustine to visit Fort Castillo de San Marcos and the other historical sites on St. George St. for our Spanish class overnight field trip.

While St. Augustine was highly entertaining back in the day, I hadn't managed to make it back since then.  Until this past weekend.

My friend rented a beach house for the week, so Kristin and I visited him last Sunday night and Monday day.  And then again on Friday night.

Ft. Castillo de San Marcos
We revisited the Fort.









Charlie's Angels was big back in our day.
Redid some 8th grade pictures.










Took some goofy pictures in the shops and around the historic sites.

In one of the shops, we found
tiny school desks.
You can say it.  We're twins.

And then tried to appreciate the history.

We discovered Florida with Juan Ponce de Leon.
Saw the Oldest Wooden Schoolhouse in the U.S.

And visited the "Love Tree--" a palm tree
growing out of an oak tree.
It was a fantastic and very fun day.

When we went back this weekend it for more of a "partying" purpose, but I went to bed early.  I set my phone alarm and set it on the charger and by the bed before I went to sleep.  When I woke up, it was gone.  My initial reaction was that someone with a blackberry drunkenly and mistakenly assumed that it belonged to them.

...After a day of no one contacting my friend to tell him that they had someone else's phone and all calls going straight to voicemail, I'm beginning to think I was wrong.

So I'm phoneless until Tuesday when Mom can get her old phone overnighted to me.  RIP Blackberry, wherever you may be.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Wanted: A loving home

What: 1 quarter sheet of cake, that was once, in the prime of its life, a half sheet of cake

Wanted: A loving home and belly for it.

I love cake.  LOVE IT.  But as long as it is in this house, I can't seem to stop myself from eating it.  

Do you know why? Anything I have to eat that I probably would eat otherwise... any way you slice it, cake just sounds better.


Grilled Chicken Sandwich?  Cake.

Tuna?  Cake.

Hot Dog?  CAKE.

My mom told me to throw it away.  I responded that that was positively wasteful.  She  reminded me: "Better wasteful than waist full!"

I'm sure I'll find it a home soon.  Who can say 'no' to white cake with buttercream frosting for long anyway?


I sure can't.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Waxing Poetic About My First Car- RIP

I got my first car when I was 20 years old.

This was largely because I didn't get my driver's license until I was 19, when I decided that I should at least know how to drive a friend's car just in case I ever needed to get us home safe.  I learned how to drive just well enough to pass the driver's test and then basically didn't drive again for a year.

My first car was Leeanne.

Love at first sight.
She was perfect.  A metallic silver 2004 Lexus ES330 with gray leather and cherry wood interior.  My friends joked that she was a grandma car.  That I should have named her "Esther" instead.  But when I was driving her home for the first time and Lee Ann Womack's "I Hope You Dance" came on the radio, I knew it was meant to be.  "Leeanne the Lexus."

She may have been a classy lady named Leeanne,
but we had our thuggin' moments together too.

It was alliterative and perfect.  We were meant for each other.

Leeanne and I went everywhere together.

My friends and I would take to parking lots looking for her after sorority chapter meetings when I'd forgotten where I parked, hollering "Leeanne? Leeannnnnnne!"

I'd inform her, while driving, that we were on our way to get her a "bath."

My "little brother" and I joked that Leeanne was dating his car: "Bruce" the 2006 IS300 because they ran in the same circles and Bruce liked "older women."

It was pathetic and mildly insane.  But I loved that car.

A match made in heaven!

Until one fateful day.

I was driving to a pre-recruitment event about a year ago when it happened.  I was the first one in the far turn lane at the red left-hand turn arrow.  The light turned green and the car next to me began to move forward, so without much conscious thought, I started moving forward too.

The next thing I knew, my vision was filled with white.  I heard tires squeal and felt myself thrown to the side in my car.  When I stopped spinning and as the airbag deflated, I looked out of a shattered windshield at the lane of traffic that I had been coming from.  My car had done a 360.  A very nice man came running up to me as I sat, clutching the steering wheel with shaking hands, tearing eyes and shallow breaths.  He assured me that the accident was not my fault and that the police were on their way.

The other girl ran a red light going over the speed limit (which, by the way, was 45 mph).  I called my mother, talked to the paramedics and police, gave a statement, and cried with a sister that I'd called because I knew she was nearby and my best friend who had miraculously been alerted to my situation thanks to our sisters.

They towed Leeanne away and I never saw her again.  I heard a few days later that she had passed on (i.e. been declared a "total loss" by my insurance company).  I have a different car now, one that I love (and have named Giselle), but it's not quite the same.

You never forget your first love.

R.I.P. Leeanne.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Happy Belated Blogiversary to me

Ok, so this cake was for my graduation,
not my Blogiversary.  It still works!
You guys, I am a bad blogger.

I missed my first "Blogiversary" by 4 whole days.  It was August 4, 2009 when I started this blog.

But I'll do the post on that whole shebang now.

Granted this blog hasn't done anything crazy like spring to 1,000 followers or anything like that.  And I don't blog about my deeply personal life too much, so it isn't as though it was "there for me" during some tough times.  But in a way it was.  It gave me something to do, something else to focus on.  It reminded me that I really do like writing, and that I want to figure out a way to make that my life.  I've started joining blog communities like 20SB and The Lady Bloggers to connect with other bloggers and figure out how to improve my own blog. And I make it a point to post more, whereas before I sort of just posted if I thought of something random (Now I just save up my random thoughts to do posts on them ;) )

It's been a hell of a year.  And I can't wait to keep on posting in here as I try to figure my life out just a little bit more.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Today is the day my life begins

My graduation cap
"Today is the day my life begins. Today, I become a citizen of the world. Today, I become a grown-up. Today, I become accountable to someone other than myself and my parents, accountable for more than my grades. Today, I become accountable to the world, to the future, to all the possibilities that life has to offer. Starting today, my job is to show up, wide-eyed and willing and ready. For what? I don’t know. For anything. For everything. To take on life. To take on love. To take on the responsibility and possibility. Today, my friends, our lives begin. And I for one, can’t wait." -Grey's Anatomy

I graduate from college in 3 hours.  It feels unreal, terrifying, exciting, and filled with potential.  The past 4 years have been a rollercoaster, but also the best of my life to date.  And I want to thank the writers of Grey's Anatomy for putting it best.  "Today is the day my life begins."

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Little Old Lady from Sanford

So, my first week is over and I am officially no longer a trainee.  Hollaaaaaa.

Dear God, I'm lame.

Anywho.  Here was the highlight of my work experience this week:


A little old lady came in and requested a table for "four of us.  And we're really rowdy" in an adorable  Southern drawl.

As I walked her to her table I made the usual small talk.

Me: "How're you doing today?"
Her: "Oh fine.  You?"
Me: "I'm doing fine too!" (Cue cheesy hostess smile and laugh)
Her: "You been behavin'?"
Me: "Yes ma'am.  I'm a good girl."
Her: "Awww, well that's a shame. Life's more fun when you don't behave."

Awesome.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Why my dear lady Devaney's! Are you yet living?

(You can thank good old Willy Shakespeare and Much Ado About Nothing for the title of this post.)

There is a fine line between a bar that is too crowded and a bar that is not crowded enough.

Thankfully (or not), when my friends and I decided to go out the other night, we did not even approach that fine line.

To be honest, I hate when a bar is crowded.  It smells worse than usual, it takes forever to grab a bartender, and you have to weave your way in and out of the sweaty, writhing mass of people. You wait in line to use a bathroom stall that doesn't lock, your requested songs never get played by the DJ and you wrinkle your nose when the stale odor of the fog pouring out over the dance floor reaches you. It's not that enjoyable to me, but I can't decide if the other night was worse or not.

We went to a bar that is extremely popular at UCF.  


Granted, that was because we got the drink special for the evening wrong, but when we arrived at 10:30-- aka a decent bar hour-- there was literally one other person there.  And he was playing trivia and watching Shark Week.

We didn't walk out immediately, but that probably has a lot to do with the fact that it was a bit awkward to do when the bartenders would notice us immediately ditching.  

So we each ordered a two dollar drink (that we thought was going to be free til midnight) and tried to liven up the place with a Shark Week drinking game.  That failed.  We then headed over to the jukebox to try to play a few songs, since there wasn't any music on. The songs we requested were "unavailable." We gave up.

We grabbed a table and tried Flip Cup, but at this point we were all irritated at the thought of spending more money on drinks than we wanted to. We discussed moving to a different location, but wasted that time for so long that we just wound up heading out at about 11:15.

So now I know. The claustrophobia-inducing crowds suck.  But a dead bar is equally bad.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Out of a Funk

I'm not exactly sure how to cope when I'm upset.  I'm generally a pretty happy person, so I have a hard time figuring out what to do to make myself feel better when I don't feel peppy.

And because I don't know what will work, I've tried a lot of things.  I've done the usual cliched thing of drinking 'til I cry, talking with guys, gorging myself on chocolate, and some other embarrassing things.  None of those work even a little bit.

So I moved on to wallowing in movies, TV shows, and (in my opinion), worst of all, horribly cheesy songs that I relate to.  Those don't make me feel better either, but singing along does... by a minuscule amount.

I surround myself with my friends because I hate to be alone, but sometimes I'm in such a funk that I have to be. I overanalyze things to death, cut ties, think about stuff I wish I'd said or done, and try to just let it go.

I dress up in pretty dresses and play with make-up.

I bake.  I cry.  I stare mindlessly at the wall.

I exercise mostly to try to exhaust myself enough to be able to sleep.  More often than not I still have to rely on Valerian or Melatonin because I can't shut my brain off long enough to drift off.

I soak in a bubble bath with a favorite novel, but can't keep my mind on the book.

But today, I tried this for a half-hour:


And you know what? It was fantastic.

Emotions are volatile things.  They're horrible really.  And I hate crying and dealing with it at all, but sometimes it's just necessary.

If you're like me and you don't have a routine, I highly recommend finding a swing set in your area.  Life seems simplified when you're just pumping your legs up and down and watching the horizon rise and fall.

First Days

I love first days at work.  Granted I had my first one when Saturday when I was ridiculously hungover and absolutely reeling from my night of drinking the evening before... I don't recommend that by the way.  Work on 1 1/2-2 hours of sleep and with body aches to boot is no picnic.

But besides that, it was a good first day, I suppose.  I sat one table in the wrong section, but I know from hostessing at a different restaurant that that's always going to happen once in a while and is easily fixed.  I also had one minor klutz attack from nerves, but at least it was just a bucket of peanuts onto the floor rather than a drink on the customer.  I tend to get jittery when I'm nervous.

But first days are really great.  Everyone's still nice to you, no one expects you to jump right in to the fray of things, you get scheduled for short and easy shifts, and you get to do a lot of resting because after all, you're still in "training."

I'm looking forward to the paychecks, etc.  But not especially to the days when the training's over.

Second day's tomorrow... I'm working the night shift this time, which will probably be a hell of a lot more hectic.

I'll be sure to let you all know how that goes.
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