Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Big News!

On a quiet beach after strolling around the tiny island of Isla Mujeres and enjoying a delicious dinner, Trent asked me to marry him. We're engaged!

What a great Christmas present. Much more details to come. Happy New Year to everyone!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

We're Off!

The house is clean, the guest room ready, the dog tucked away at her kennel, our bags are packed and our ride with friends arranged. We are off to Mexico!!

I hope you all have a wonderful holidays where ever you are and enjoy the break in routine. I will post lots of pictures of our adventures when we get back.

Happy Holidays!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

This week was exhausting! So much to do before vacation, so many parties to attend, and our party to host. But it all got done, and it was all a blast. Here are some pics from the cookie swap on Thursday that was a huge success. Here are a few pics:

Mingling and chatting.

The cookie spread. I was very impressed with everyone's talents. So many cookies!

The neighbors. Discussing pre-wedding festivity options.

Amanda assists me with all the cool options my new scarf holds. Thanks Johnson Family!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Oh Christmas Plant...

I am loving the Christmas gardenia. I can't wait to have delicious blossoms. I am thinking maybe next year we could have a Christmas Meyer lemon tree? Or perhaps a Easter Meyer lemon tree. I think it would be fun to have this inside during the winter and outside in the summer!

Yesterdays highs and lows

Yesterday was full of ups and downs. Just thought I would share a few.

Up: Really excited to give blood.
Down: She nicked the vein and I have a huge hematoma on my arm and it is very sore. Not cool.

Up: Went and got my hair cut short and lighter for Mexico. Looks cute, I think.
Down: Took forever (Aveda Institute, so all the stylists are still learning), got locked out of lab, kinda wish it was shorter and lighter, but oh well.

Up: Trent felt sorry for me and let me sit on the sofa eating mac and cheese and finishing the Christmas cards and packing up all the presents, while he cleaned and arranged the guest room.
Down: We have a lot of cleaning still to do and I got sucked into watching America's Biggest Loser finale and got way too emotionally into it.

Just a recap, thanks for listening to me complain :)

Good News!

I lived with a fabulous fellow for three out of the four years of college, from the dorms, to a huge party house we had no idea how to take care of, to a more manageable apartment. Throughout the whole experience, Garrett was sort of our "Papa G." He made sure we paid rent, didn't let the parties get too out of hand, ran with me at 11pm when I desperately needed to go running, and in general kept us in line. I feel the above picture summarizes the relationship a bit.

He married his highschool sweetheart the summer after our senior year. It was a beautiful wedding in Sacramento. They moved about Sacramento and just finished moving into a brand new house in Roseville. Just in time. They just announced that they are expecting! Papa G will really be a Papa! It is wonderful news. And I think Kristen will be about the cutest little pregnant one I've ever seen. Congrats roomie!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Charitable Giving (Literally)

After a busy morning of sorting cells and meeting with the previous holder of a leadership position I will be taking over soon, I am off to donate blood with Trent. It our annual holiday tradition (well, I donate as often as I can, being O+). We are young and healthy and have a lot going for us, it seems like a great way to help out. Plus, yummy snacks, and I've figured out a way to not pass out any more. Hooray!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Weekend Review

It was holiday-cheer jam-packed weekend. Pretty awesome. Friday night was the Genetics Department holiday party, so lots of mingling with professors and fellow students, drinking wine and eating what we decided was themed "Fried Foods from Around the World." Eggplant Parmesan, spring rolls, hush puppies, it was bizarre. Trent came, said hello to my boss and his four year old daughter who I had secretly fed about 6 petit fours to (awesome) and was bouncing off the walls, and grabbed a box of pulled pork (his favorite), and we left.

Home to meet up with assistant coach Thomas before picking up Stephen and Amanda. We all headed over to the Masters Crew team holiday party. Very fit and enthusiastic "seasoned" rowers. We enjoyed delicious desserts and wine and good conversation. Finally around midnight, we headed home, forgoing joining up with friends who were out at bars.

Trent was up early to go to Raleigh with Stephen and 10 junior high boys from Durham who were promised fun outings if they got good grades in a community outreach program. They all went BMX biking on a closed course, with rental bikes and full face helmets. Sounds like they had a great time, Trent was exhausted when he got home. Meanwhile, Sadie and I went on a run, and then I cleaned like crazy getting ready for our trip and houseguests when we get home (yay!). Having a dog who sheds and hardwood floors is an interesting experience. I was just getting Sadie out of the tub, after I realized she was causing all the dustbunnies, when Amanda came over. We wrapped presents, made candles, and discussed their upcoming wedding and such.

Trent, Stephen and Jersey came over soon after and the boys made a huge pile of nachos with leftover pulled pork and the dogs played like crazy in the newly fenced yard. Muddy creatures, so much for her bath. They had a great time though. We hung out for a bit before we headed out to do errands. Donations of old clothes, last minute Christmas shopping (I am nearly done!), and a trip to Lowe's for the inevitable home repairs. I was being a bit mopey about not having a Christmas tree this year, when we decided on a compromise. Introducing the...

Christmas Gardenia Bush! We decided that a live plant that we will enjoy for years is a much better plan this year, and we got one big enough to handle some lights and a few ordaments. I put it on a table in front of our big bay window so folks walking their dogs to the park can enjoy our craftyness as well. I love it. Home from shopping and Trent napped while I made delicious mushroom puff pastery goodies before heading over to Elizabeth's house for another Christmas party. I wore my new JCrew dress, which really does demand a peacock feather accessory of some sort, and had a great time catching up with friends and drinking hot toddies, thanks to Deirdre. Our friends Su and Chris just got engaged so it was fun to hear about that. Trent "McGyver-ed" the sink when the handle broke mid-party and we headed home around midnight.

Sunday was a work day. Trent and Stephen had gone to ReStore after BMX-ing and found a perfect set of wood shutters for the house. We sanded them and spray painted them glossy black and installed them (pics in next post). We also put up numbers on a spray painted drawer front that Trent has hundreds of. Long story. But the house looks fantastic. We worked and worked, and then Stephen came over to work and the dogs played like mad, and I had to stop into work for a bit. Home to wash the dog, yet again, and get ready for our last Christmas party of the weekend, at Paul and Sheila's house. They are friends from Davis who recently moved here and just finished their townhouse. Fun to mingle with new folks and try all sorts of Swedish (she is originally from there) holiday treats. We left around 9pm, came home and crashed. Busy weekend! But so fun to share it with great friends, I love that we had three completely independent gatherings to attend. And making such visible progress on the house was awesome.

Some gratitous dog pictures. Sadie, pre-bath, sporting her Christmas outfit.

Sadie after her two exhausting play sessions, and two scrub downs. She looks a bit fatigued. But so fluffy!

House Updates!

Our house is all grown up! Look at those snazzy shutters. Gorgeous. Check out the Christmas gardenia in the window.

We are legitimate now.

Pallet fence is coming together. And can manage to keep in Jersey and Sadie in full wrassle mode, which is fantastic.

The other side of the pallet fence. I appreciate Trent's creative sloping solution.

We made a quick stop to our favorite crazy guy antique store and grabbed this cutie for $20. A bit of waxing and buffing and she shone. And will be great for our guest room, and guests!

Sadie loves me.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Umm, hello?

It is 9:45 am. I am the only one here in lab. It is disconcerting.

Did I forget a meeting? Not that I was aware of. A fantastic talk? Nope. The memo that rainy days mean stay home in your jammies? Apparently, and I am kinda mad.

But I am also thinking it is a bit of an omen. I came in riled up and ready to give my boss a piece of my mind (after lots of wine and discussing the matter last night with Trent and the crew team, who bless them, give me unconditional support and convince me I am sure right about everything). Since he is not here, I've had to cool down a bit and come up with a list of rational reasons why I am not pleased and hopefully he will get here soon so I can discuss them and move on.

Ah, for now I am off to see if they still have my favorite pumpkin coffee at the library coffee shop. Shouldn't complain, I suppose.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

So much pressure!

Trent and I are thinking of hosting a holiday cookie party next week to get some extra celebrating in before we leave. This blog post was a lot of the inspiration, they all look delicious.

But it is kind of a lot of pressure.. what cookies to make!?

Any recommendations?

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

I've had about 30 random friends from my junior high and high school days add me as friends on Facebook today.

Did they just remember how awesome I am? Cuz.. I am.

But very distracting!!

Christmas Tunes

We are on holiday hyperdrive around here. Got the Christmas card photo taken this weekend, lights are up on the house (well, some of them), and I am planning on getting a wreath for the front door. Not sure yet if we will get a tree.. since we won't be here for the holiday, but I have been drinking lots of spiced cider and listening to This Warm December.. my new favorite Christmas album.

Mix that cd up with some James Taylor Christmas and of course a little Bing Crosby, and it is all my friends serenading me with holiday cheer!

Monday, December 08, 2008

Fun but chillllly weekend. Friday night's riding lesson was awesome, it is coming back quickly and I feel less like a big mess each time. I actually think I helped train instead of just having a good time. Not as much jumping as last time, as I didn't want to make Ashely hobble around and set stuff up for me, but I am also FAR less sore this time, so maybe a good trade off. I was warm enough, until I got off and then immediately froze. We toweled him dry (and the horse wore the fanciest black velour cooling sheet I've ever seen) and headed home. Trent had made spinach gnocci and intense garlic bread for dinner and off to bed.

Up early early Saturday morning for a group trail run through the forest. We went for about an hour and it was chilly but gorgeous. And Sadie had a fantastic time. Once she realizes that we are in this run for longer than her normal 20 minute jaunts, she learns to pace herself and falls in line with the rest of us. Super adorable. Afterwards Paul, Sheila, Trent and I headed to Elmo's for breakfast after we found Weaver St had no indoor tables. I had delicious pancakes and eggs, and lots of hot coffee to warm up. Lots of UC Davis gossiping going on.

Home and immediately out again to meet up with Stephen and Amanda. We walked to their perspective home, which is exactly the same design and age as ours, but much better kept. I had fun snooping around the house and trying to identify the plants they will inherit (I am kinda jealous!). Trent was the second opinion to the professional inspector, even going under the house with him. All in all, the house checked out fine and they are progressing with the sale. So exciting, it is adorable and has a fenced yard for their enormous dog, which will be great. And only another block away.. so I guess we can manage.

We walked back and we all went to Carrburrito for lunch. Yummmm. From there the boys headed to Lowe's and Amanda and I walked home, chatting about the home and the upcoming wedding. They are busy folks! We ended up at their house watching the UF vs. Alabama game, both her dad and brother are faculty at UF so she is a Gator fan. I walked home and met up with Trent who had gotten all sorts of goodies at Lowe's, including new lamps for the living room. Finally! I've disliked the lamp in there for wayyy too long, but Trent is very picky.

We were supposed to go to a friends house for a bonfire and such, but somehow got inspired to clean out closets and donate clothes, so we rode that wave instead. By the time we were done, I was beat from the long day, and we went to bed.

Relatively calm morning, I got to work on my latest project for work which requires me to read enormous stacks of papers to become an expert in a field I am not too familiar with. Stephen came over and the boys built things in the backyard, and worked on the pallet fence, which I finally took pictures of but forgot to bring to work. I made baked potatoes with homemade chili to warm them up, but was otherwise cloistered in the office trying to work. A quick trip to lab for me and a crew meeting for Trent and then back home. Trent watched "Into the Wild," and I tried to stay focused. I have a definite game plan now for this project, just have to pitch it to the boss.

There was ice on my bike seat this morning. Yikes. But I had to ride because we have yoga at 5pm with the crew team at Franklin St. Yoga and I am terrible at the buses. I was SO bundled up for my ride in. I cannot wait to go to Mexico. I am going to wear a bikini the entire time.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Week Recap

'Twas a good after birthday week. Including;

1. Lots of working out, including a weight lifting class which I hate with a passion but am trying to do because I think lifting is important, but have no idea what to do and I stare at the clock willing it to move faster and then laugh because my mom does the same thing in her classes.

2. Lots of hanging out with the crew team. Late night runs that I got to help lead (Yay moderate pace group!), dinners at the dining hall including witnessing birthday serenades, and a very confused assistant coach who didn't understand that by "going to a bar to watch a game" we actually meant "go to a cute hipster hang out and drink wine and gossip while the game in on a tiny tv." Sorry Thomas.

3. Bright pink fingernails. Like neon. Makes me happy.

4. Some huge huge things on the horizon here at work. I am going to be obscenely busy for the next two weeks before Mexico, but could be huge for my career. If my boss thinks I can do it.. who am I to argue?

5. Deirdre and I have nearly the exact same outfit on today. Black leggings, grey tunic-y dress, ballet flats. We hung out last night, but I promise, this was not discussed.

6. Our neighbor's adorable wedding website. And helping her find the perfect sparkly reception sweater.

7. Lots of Spanish soap operas. I am actually getting kinda sucked in to one of them. Que dramatico!

8. Frosty morning runs with Sadie in the forest. She is SO happy with this chilly weather.

9. Having amazing turkey barley soup every night for dinner because Trent made a stellar, and enormous, batch of it.

10. Starting to get in the holiday spirit. As much as I can with a looming Mexican holiday in my horizon.

I am off to get home, get dinner and head to Raleigh to go riding with Ashley. She sprained her ankle and is out of commission, so I get a real lesson tonight from her. Hopefully I won't be AS sore as I was last time. Other than that, this weekend has accompanying the neighbors on their inspection for the house they hope to buy, taking Christmas card photos, and lots and lots of work. Good times! Hope you all have a good one.

Thursday, December 04, 2008


I will be very sad the day we no longer commute daily by bicycle to work and to the gym and to the bars to meet up with friends and watch basketball games. It will be a sad day. That is hopefully very far off :)

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

I (heart) JCrew, on sale!

Trent, the neighbors, and I braved the mall on Sunday due to the drizzle and grayness of the day.

I found this awesome dress for an insanely good price. It looks much better on. I think it is a good mix of elegance and professional.

I am thrilled.

And maybe it would look fantastic with a feather headband? Right Emily?

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Preparations for Mexico

I've decided the best way (especially in North Carolina) to brush up on my Spanish skills before heading to Mexico (yayyy!!!) in a few weeks is to watch lots of Spanish soap operas. I had it on last night while doing dishes and writing thank you notes and such, and it is an excellent way to learn. So dramatic, so repetitive, it is perfect. Except, I suppose I will sound a little ridiculous walking around saying "Mira, este bebé... es suya."

Thankful for: Athletic Neighbors

I love having an Olympic athlete living nearby who comes and picks up our dog while I am in my jammies eating oatmeal and takes her on a rigorous run through the forest and returns her happy and exhausted just when I am done getting ready, especially on frosty mornings like today.

Lucky me! And lucky Sadie, I suppose.

And great news, her BFF Jersey is just growing awkwardly.. no hip dysplasia! Terrific news.