Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Ten Days Aborted

I'm horribly bored with this 10 day blogging series!  It ends today.  Days 8, 9 and 10 are hereby forfeited.  I just can't stand to blab on and on about random things that I (and you) could care less about.  No one is even reading this anymore.  I'm sorry!   I'm officially giving up.  (You can thank me later.)


Instead, let's talk about something way more fun.

The Caribbean! 

Who's been?  Where did you go?  Where did you stay?  What did you do there?  

I'm asking because we're thinking about spending our Christmas holiday in the Caribbean!  I know, amazing, right?  Last year we spent Christmas on the beach in Belize and raved about it.  This year Ryan's parents want to spend the holidays somewhere warm and sunny and have invited us along!  Hell yeah!  I'm still not sure if we're going to be able to swing it though - we need to find a house/condo with at least 2 bedrooms, close to a beach, that's available 12/23 - 1/2, that's not priced out in orbit.   So, we have a lot of research to do, not much time to do it, and about 80 islands to pick from.  Help! 

I've never been to the Caribbean, so I don't know anything about the islands.  Which ones are nice?  Which ones are boring?  Which ones have the best snorkeling?  Which ones have the best food?  Which one have the best beaches?  Which ones are the safest?  

I'm clueless!  Have you ever been to the Caribbean?  Please tell me about your experience!  Where would you recommend that we look?  I'd like to narrow our search down to 3-5 islands.  Any advice is appreciated!   
Thanks!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Day Seven

Day Seven: Four things you're looking forward to.

Today's topic was supposed to be four turn-ons, but since I'm married to the perfect man and am no longer interested in anyone other than Ryan (well, maybe Bruce Willis), I thought this would be more appropriate.

1. Mini Medical School - Guess what...I was accepted to medical school! Yay me! No really, everyone that applies (and pays tuition) is accepted, so I can't claim to be some kind of doctor/lawyer extraordinaire. St. Louis's own Washington University Medical School offers an 8-week "Mini-Med School" course for regular people. Mini-Medical School provides savvy healthcare consumers with the latest information on medical research, nutrition, genetics, diseases and treatment options. I'm taking Mini-Med School I, which meets for 2 hours every Tuesday night and teaches operating room protocol and practice surgical techniques, offers lectures on topics such as Alzheimer's, allergies, diabetes, skin conditions, Gastroenterology, pneumonia and heart attacks. We get to tour the Washington University School of Medicine Genome Sequencing Center and the ER. How cool! And at the end of 8 weeks, I'll graduate! You can call me Dr. Sara. :)

2. Bien Living Master Bedroom Make-Over - Remember that Long Distance Design session I won from OMG I'm a Mom? Well, it's finally time I got my act together and made it happen. I finally figured out what I want to do with our bedroom. FINALLY. It's only taken me 3.75 years. I bought bedroom furniture last week! (Holy moly bedroom furniture is expensive.) I figured out what colors I wanted to do the room in (surprise, they're not the same as the grey/yellow that I thought I wanted to do here). And this morning I sent Kristin at Bien Living my ideas and the "before" pictures of our bedroom. This is finally going to happen! Now, who wants to come over next weekend and help me paint?

3. Camping - Ryan and I are packing up the canoe, the dog and the pick-up truck and heading down to the river this weekend to float/camp. The weather is absolutely perfect - 70s during the day and cool 50s at night. I can't wait to sit around the campfire and make S'mores and listen to the water without another living soul anywhere around. Ryan will spend the days fishing, I'll read and relax and Mally will get completely covered in burrs and sticks and mud. Perfect weekend.

4. Birth Announcements - Next week my friend Jessica and I are going to design her birth announcements! I'm so excited about this! She's having a baby girl in October, so I get to use my love of paper products (oh how I love cardstock and envelope liners), pink bows, pictures and babies to help her make/design some adorable birth announcements. I'm accepting ideas if you have any. Can't wait.

Your turn! What are you looking forward to?

Monday, September 27, 2010

Day Six

Day Six: Five people who mean a lot to you.

There's just no way I can limit this to 5 people.  I can't even limit it to humans. 

Instead, I'm just going to pick 5 people I don't actually know in real life that mean something "special" to me.  But I'm not going to say why they're significant.  You have to guess!  If you have an email account linked to your blogger ID/account, I'll respond to your comments and let you know if you're right.  Good luck!


1. Bruce Willis
2. Reese Witherspoon
3. William Shakespeare
4. Julie Andrews
5. Martha Stewart

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Day Five

Day Five: Six things you wish you could change or you wish you’d never done.


1. I wish I wasn't so afraid of bikes.  I don't really know where this intense fear of bikes came from, but I'd like it to go away.  I think it'd be really fun to go on bike rides without the insane fear of being hit by a car or crashing into a person/tree/car/hydrant/curb/etc.  A helmet is not enough to keep me safe.  I'd need full-body armor to start.  Baby steps.

2.  I wish I would have caught that foul ball that landed in my seat at that Cardinal's game back in 2006 and been able to give it to Ryan.  He was out buying me hot chocolate because I was cold and whiny.  I chickened out and didn't even try for the ball.  And he was so upset he missed it and I feel like I disappointed him.  How cool would it be to have caught that ball and given it to him?  I kick myself.  Sorry Ryan.


3.  Two words: big bangs.  Oh, the early 90s were rough.

4.  I wish I hadn't painted my bathroom green.  Seafoam pale green.  What was I thinking?  It's horrible.  And now I look green and sickly in the bathroom mirror.  Not good.


5.  I wish I hadn't eaten quite so much sushi for lunch today.  Oh holy fullness, I'm going to explode.

6.  I wish I had been easier on my parents growing up.  I was pretty spoiled and not all that well-disciplined.  I didn't get into a lot of trouble, but I should have - I just didn't get caught.  I was kind of a wild child.  And that is SO going to come back an bite me in the ass when I have kids.  I just hope they inherit their father's halo. 

Friday, September 24, 2010

Day Four

Day Four: Seven things that cross your mind a lot.

1. I constantly think about what my life would be like had I moved to Chicago for law school, instead of St. Louis.  I was accepted to a couple really great schools in Chicago and I was determined to move to the city.  I'm not sure what happened or why I changed my mind (probably money), but I'm so glad I did!  I can't imagine my life without my husband or my home or my friends.  I'm sure I would have been fine in Chicago, but I don't regret my decision for a second. 

2.  What ever happened to my friend Katie?  I grew up best friends with another little blonde who was my best friend all through grade school.  We vacationed together, we took dance together, we did gymnastics together - we were inseparable.  We grew apart a little during high school, but were still good friends.  We went our separate ways for college and I haven't seen or heard from her since.  Every now and then someone will ask me what happened to Katie and where she lives and I'm embarrassed to say that I don't know.   I'd love to find out.  She's not on Facebook, she doesn't keep in touch with anyone I know of and she doesn't even show up on a Google search.  Where are you Katie?!  I think about you all the time!

3.  What's for dinner?  Every day, all day long I think about dinner.  :-)  I love dinner. 

4.  Ryan and I discuss moving to the mountains all the time.  We have an entire life planned out West that we love to talk about.  We're going to Boulder or Jackson Hole or Bozeman or somewhere similar - small and rugged and cool and mountainy.  Ryan's going to be a ski instructor in the winter and a fly fishing guide in the summer.  And I'm going to _________.  (crickets)  I don't know!  What would I want to do?  This whole lawyer thing is great, but I'm not saving the world or anything.  I'd love to write, but I'm not sure that's realistic (like this whole elaborate daydream is realistic!).  But what would I ever write about?  And who would read it?  I'd also love to cook, but I don't want to deal with cooking for strangers - too stressful.  I love the idea of cooking for small groups of people in a teaching environment, or even teaching a high school cooking class.  Or maybe I'll just have a bunch of kids and animals and run a farm.  I don't know.  This is the stuff that keeps me up nights.  :)

5. Where am I going to go with my free Southwest flight?  Should I grab my sunglasses and go visit Mel in Orlando?  Should I get foodie tips from Christine and head to San Francisco?  Should I take my cowboy boots to Texas to visit Shabby Princess and Tiffany?  Or maybe do a little shopping in SoCal with Katie.  So many choices?  You all live in such desirable places!  When can I come visit?

6.  Again, what's for dinner?!  I still haven't decided.  Tacos?  Sushi?  Pasta?  Pizza?  Mmmmm...food. 

7.  What the hell am I going to be for Halloween?  It's a month away and I have no costume ideas.  Ryan and I always throw a big Halloween costume party and our friends come up with the best costume ideas.  I've been racking my brain for months now and can't come up with anything clever.  This happens every year!  Any ideas?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Day Three

Day Three: Eight Things You Couldn't Live Without


1. Benefit Erase Paste (this stuff is genius)

2. Audio books (makes my commute fly by)


3. Pencil skirts (I wear one almost every day)
4. My camera (how did life exist before I bought this?)

5. Sushi (pretty self-explanatory...mmmmmm)

6. Pets (my dog and cat make my world a better place)

7. Platform heels (essential for us shorties)
8. My hubby (he's the bees knees - how else would I get stuff off the high shelves?)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Giveaway Winner!

We have a winner for the blogiversary Williams-Sonoma Halloween cupcake giveaway!

 
And the lucky number is...

#1

Congrats d.a.r. from


d.a.r. -  I'll be contacting you to get your mailing address!  
I hope you'll post pictures of all the delicious spooky cupcakes you bake.

Thanks to everyone that entered! 
Can't wait to do this again!

Day Two

Day Two: Nine things about yourself that most people don't know.

1.  I have a horrible (some might say irrational) fear of E.T.  I can't even see commercials for the movie -- that thing freaks me out.  My cousin Jessica used to chase me around the house with an E.T. doll that had a light up finger.  I still have nightmares.

2.  I love sparkling water.  It makes me feel European and fancy.  (Yes, I'm aware that sounds ridiculous.)

3.  I can't do math.  At all.  Even simple addition and subtraction.  It's quite embarrassing.

4.  I put ice in my milk.  Ryan thought it was disgusting.  Until he tried it.  Now he puts ice in his milk too.  But I don't like a lot of ice in my water.

5.  I've gotten about 95 speeding tickets since I turned 16.  I never get out of them.  My mom thinks the sole reason I went to law school was so I could fix my own tickets.  That's kinda true.


6.  I used to go to Girl Scout camp every summer and ride horses.  I was homesick and cried every single day but always wanted to go back the next year.  Maybe I forgot.  Or maybe I just really loved the songs and the S'mores.  I still sing Girl Scout songs to myself!

7.  One day I will own some version of a mini animal: mini horse, mini pig, mini cow, etc.  Ryan will not be pleased, but it must be done.  Or a talking pig...either would be fine.


8.  I still have never seen an episode of Mad Men, How I Met Your Mother, Parks and Rec, 30 Rock or the Real Housewives of anywhere.  I'm a little behind.

9.  I cheat at board game.  There.  I said it.  Consider yourself warned.


Anyone else playing along on the Ten Day blogging?  Leave a comment and link to your blog!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Day One

Day One: Ten things you want to say to ten different people right now.

Alice:  I'm so excited that you're having a GIRL!!!  I knew it!  I cannot wait to buy your kid all kinds of pretty pink ruffly sparkly clothes!  I hope you name her Sara. :)

That Wife: I am so excited to meet you tonight!  I've been reading your blog(s) for years now and I'm so impressed with your strong convictions and beautiful writing and gorgeous photos.  I'm thrilled that I get to learn from one of my favorite bloggers/photographers!

Brit @ Landlocked Bride: You're getting married in less than one week!  It goes by so fast, make sure you take time to savor the moment and all the people there supporting you.  I know you're going to look amazing.  And I'm dying to see the pictures!

Jenna & Rett: You guys have not left my thoughts in weeks.  I am so scared, nervous, happy, and excited for you at the same time.  I wish there was something I could do or say to help.  Please know Ryan and I are here for you if you ever need anything. 

The Pioneer Woman: Please adopt me.  Or hire me to be your intern/BFF/protege.  I will make Starbuck's runs.  Please.

Heather: Hope you have an amazing time in Peru!  I'm so horribly jealous.  Wish I was going too.  Chicago ≠ Peru.  Please take at least six million pictures.

Lindsay Lohan:  Stop.  Just stop.  Stop everything.

Iris:  Hope you're getting settled into your new home and loving it.  When can I come visit?

Ryan: I love you and miss you.  Wish you were here in Chicago with me.  Give the animals a kiss for me.

Blog Readers (yes, you!): Please leave a comment.  I'm stuck in boring meetings all day long and I'd love to hear from you.  I might not be able to reply, but it'll be a nice distraction from all this financial reform talk.  Nothing in particular, just whatever's on you mind.  Mucho gracias!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Ten Days

This upcoming week I'll be in Chicago, attending a fabulous (yeah right) seminar on the Dodd-Frank Financial Reform Bill for work.  Talk about exciting!  I don't know how I'm going to possibly sleep until then, I'm so excited.  Hold me back! 


Anyway, since I won't have much time to blog during the day (conference) or at night (because I'm doing some really really awesome stuff while I'm there that'll I'll tell you all about when I get back), I thought it'd be fun to do this 10 Days blogging activity.  Michelle, over at See Michelle Blog just finished doing this and I loved the idea.  Although I will admit that I slightly changed a few of the requests.  If you've got a blog, feel free to play along over the next ten days too.  Or just leave your answers in the comment section (pretty please leave comments...I need something to help me get through the seminar).  We can compare answers!

So, here's the schedule.  Over the next 10 days, blog about the items on this list:

Day One: Ten things you want to say to ten different people right now.

Day Two: Nine things about yourself that most people don't know.

Day Three: Eight things you couldn't live without.

Day Four: Seven things that cross your mind a lot.

Day Five: Six things you wish you could change or you wish you’d never done.

Day Six: Five people who mean a lot to you.

Day Seven: Four turn offs.

Day Eight: Three turn ons.

Day Nine: Two words that describe your life right now.

Day Ten: One confession.


Hope you'll play along! 

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Happy Blogiversary

Hard to believe it's been 3 years since I started this little blog.  I never imagined that I'd still be doing this (and people would actually be reading this!) three years later!  This blog has morphed over the years and has really become something I'm proud of and love to do.  It all began with the purpose of keeping my friends and family informed on my progress as I trained for the St. Louis Marathon.  As it would turn out, my friends and family never read it!  No one knew what a blog was three years ago!  I had 2 loyal readers (Kirsten and Rick), who were also training for their first marathons.  I basically wrote just to keep myself motivated and accountable.  And, of course, I became hopelessly addicted.

After the race, the blog became more personal.  I posted about birthday parties and vacations and things going on in my life.  A few months later, I started planning our wedding.  That was taking up most of my free time, so I started using the blog to document our wedding details.  Although, I admit that I really held back on doing this because I didn't want to ruin all the fun details and surprises we had in store for our wedding guests (just in case they were reading the blog...which they weren't).  At this time, I think I had maybe 10 followers.

In the last year, after the wedding, this blog has really blossomed into what it is now.  It's a blog about my day-to-day life and whatever happens to be on my mind at the time. It’s a work in progress, constantly changing directions, with a mind of its own. It’s exciting because I never know where my posts will lead me!

It's a place where I can write about whatever I want!  I typically write about my hobbies and interests, including cooking, sewing, photography, shopping and running.  I blog about trips and vacations I take, weddings and events I attend, races I run, home improvement projects I tackle, cooking and sewing classes I take and meals I cook, things/trends/items I like and shows I watch.  Basically, it's me, me, me!  Every blogger's dream!  And I'm almost up to 150 followers and I get comments on nearly every single post!  I couldn't be happier!

Since most of you have probably only discovered this little blog of mine in the last few months, I wanted to highlight some of my favorite posts over the years that I hope you'll take a minute to read.  These are just a few of my favorites:













The Lamb Cake Saga - Part 1 and Part 2


 
 
 
 
AND NOW...to celebrate the big 3 year blogiversary, I'm doing a giveaway! 

Halloween cupcake decoration, Sprinkles cupcake mix and a Halloween rubber spatula from Williams-Sonoma!  Such a cute little gift pack that I want to keep it for myself!
 
 
 
How to enter:
 
Just leave a comment on what your favorite blog post has been over the last three years!
 
That's it!
 
Make sure I have your email address so I can get in touch with you if you win. 

Winner will be chosen at random.

Giveaway ends Friday at midnight.
 
Good luck!
 


Monday, September 13, 2010

Quoted in the New York Times!

If you follow me on Facebook or Twitter, you know (because I was shouting it from the rooftops) that I was recently interviewed by the New York Times about our wedding.  I know...the NEW YORK TIMES!!!  I'm still in shock too!  HERE'S A LINK TO THE ARTICLE.  You might have to create an account and sign in to be able to view it.  I was out of town and didn't have a chance to pick up a hard copy of the NYT, so if anyone has one, please let me know!

So, how did this happen?  The absolutely lovely and talented Kathryn over at Snippet & Ink recommended me to the NYT as a real bride that used blogs as inspiration during the wedding planning process.  Snippet & Ink is famous for featuring gorgeous inspiration boards, focused around a color scheme, an idea, a holiday, a location, an item, etc.  Kathryn has impeccable taste and comes up with some really incredible creations.  Our wedding was featured on Snippet & Ink last summer (here) and I mentioned to Kathryn that her website and other blogs were a huge part of the inspiration/idea process.  Kathryn must see hundreds of weddings a week, so I'm completely honored that she thought of me for the interview.

I also was beyond thrilled to see a few references to Weddingbee in the article.  When the author asked me about whether I got inspiration from real life brides, I immediately told him all about Weddingbee, which is a blog that features around 20 real brides blogging daily about their wedding planning process, ideas, inspiration, projects, pictures, etc.  Weddingbee also has a forum where you can chat with other brides, classifieds where you can buy/sell wedding items, DIY tutorials and a large picture gallery.  It's updated about 25 times a day, so there's always something new and fresh to read every time you go back. 

I found Weddingbee during my planning and was blown away by all of the amazing, talented, smart, crafty, accomplished, funny women bloggers featured on this site.  I felt like I really got to know them by going through the process and emotions of planning a wedding together.  I still follow a lot of their personal (non-wedding) blogs, which involve being newlyweds, buying new homes and being new moms.  Unfortunately I found the website a little too late to apply to be a "Bee" on Weddingbee (that would have been so cool!).  But I did meet some amazing people/vendors through that site and made a few friends along the way. 

So, if you're planning a wedding (or just love weddings as much as I do), you MUST familiarize yourself with Snippet & Ink and Weddingbee ASAP.  That's my wedding-related PSA for the day.  And my 15 minutes of fame are now up, so I'm going back to my day job. 

Tootles.

Friday, September 10, 2010

7 Years Ago Today




Once upon a time, on a warm September day in 2003, a boy asked a girl out on a date.


She said no.


He was charming and smart and funny.


But she had laundry to do.


He was persistent.


She finally said yes.


He showed up to her apartment in a pick-up truck with no shoes on.


It was strange.


But he was sweet and thoughtful and brought her a case of Diet Coke.


They went to a Cardinals baseball game...with two other guys.


It was awkward.


Then they went to a bar and sat outside and listened to music.


He bought her a rose.


It was nice.


The lead singer of the band made strange comments to them about having "red eyes" for each other while holding up candles to his face and dancing around.


It was weird.


He drove her home and went inside to met her dog.


The dog tore his flip flops into tiny pieces so he was shoeless once again.


He kissed her goodnight.


It was a perfect kiss.

It was September 10th, 2003.


It was the day that changed the rest of my life.


Happy first date-iversary Ryan!


I still have red eyes for you, love.


Thursday, September 9, 2010

St. Louis Aces Tennis Match

A few weeks ago, Ryan's cousin's husband Greg invited us to a St. Louis Aces tennis match at Forest Park.
Greg's company was hosting a cocktail reception before the match and wanted to know if we'd like tickets.
Never one to turn down free cocktails, we said yes.
Greg also gave us 2 extra tickets for friends, so of course we invited Alice and Ryan, the biggest tennis fans I know.
However, this was no ordinary tennis match.

There would be a special guest.
Did you see that?!

Anna Kournikova.

Anna (freaking) Kournikova!

ANNA KOURNIKOVA!

Anna would be in the picture area at 6:00 to take a picture with us.

I die.
The boys were absolutely giddy with excitement about meeting Anna.
Not gonna lie...Alice and I were pretty excited too!
Of course, Anna was drop-dead gorgeous.
She was shorter than I thought she'd be (although still taller than me), but so so so tiny!
My Ryan had to get his own picture with Anna. 
He didn't want to share her.
I think he may have slipped her his phone number.
Alice and Ryan were next.  They got their picture with Anna together.
I have a feeling this might be their Christmas card.
And if you didn't know, Anna is married?/engaged? to Enrique Iglesias and has the most unbelievable ring.
Check that sucker out!
Good job Enrique.

And if Anna Kournikova wasn't enough, Lindsay Davenport was also there!
Lindsay was so incredibly nice (and so incredibly tall!).
She genuinely seemed happy to be there.
Afterwards, it was time for the matches.
We had great seats.
The St. Louis Aces wore black and white (I approve).
The first match was between two guys. 
(I took pictures, but they were boring, so I'm not posting them.)
While the guys were playing, the girls strategized about their doubles match on the sidelines.
Anna showed off her tramp stamp.
Lindsay cheered for her St. Louis teammate.
She's so nice!
And then it was time!

Anna and Lindsay vs. two unfortunate girls from the OC. 

Those poor girls.

Bet they thought St. Louis would be a piece of cake.

We had quite the dream team.
Anna's shirt had her name on it...in case anyone in the world didn't know who she was.
She's a diva like that.
Celebrities are just like you and me.
Sometimes they pick their butt too.
The match was exciting.
There was a nice little cheering section.
I loved all the power serves.
Alice loved their facial expressions and trying to image what they were thinking (and discussing their personal lives, of course).
The boys loved the view.
And the beer.
Suddenly, in the middle of the match, we looked across the stadium and were distracted by this:
Do you see that?! 
Black sleeveless turtleneck and black lace bell-bottom leggings at a tennis match? 
In the middle of freaking July?
What was she thinking?
We couldn't stop staring.
Anyway, back to the match...
Anna and Lindsay seemed to get along well together.
Alice follows Lindsay on Twitter and said that Lindsay tweeted about how excited she was to be playing with Anna.  I love that.  Linsday's awesome.
At the end of the match, St. Louis won!

Way to go Lindsay and Anna - you did St. Louis proud!

Anna texted Enrique and told him they won. 
He was proud too.

Thank you Greg! 

We had such a blast. 

I'm happy to repay you in free baby-sitting services any time!