Monthly Archives: March 2011

Birthday Weekend

First of all, I want to congratulate E.H. from Attorney at Large on winning the birthday giveaway! If you don’t already read her blog, you should. She’s smart and funny and her daughter P makes for some hilarious stories. I’m thinking about another giveaway themed around then end of 1L year and getting my husband’s sanity back, at least for 3 months.

So, this past Friday, as soon as Mr. A got out of class, we headed home to $TL for the weekend. We get to see my family more than his, but we love that city and I was excited to see them all again.

I have mentioned before, but my brother and I are 7 years and 2 days apart. We both had the same due date- he came on his, I came two days late. Just shows I was born to be the stubborn one. And since we are so close in dates, we have always done a family birthday for both of us. When I was younger it bothered me that I didn’t have my own day, but now that B and I are such good friends, I enjoy it. Wouldn’t want to share with anyone else.

And since Friday was B’s actual birthday, we wanted to go out with him and buy him a couple drinks. We learned that my brother may be 31, but he can stay out later and party harder than we can. But let me just say, he likes to go out with friends and have a good time, but I’ve never seen a guy who was so responsible and who worked as hard as he does. He’s a social worker and is regularly recruited for different programs and hospitals because of how good he is at his job. So yeah, he has a good time, but I believe he fully deserves it.

We met up with B and his ex girlfriend who may be a current girlfriend again, which si great with me because I loved her and I think their time apart has helped them see they belong together. Another couple came and we grabbed dinner at this awesome restaurant that is a little hipster-y, and has wonderful upscale bar food. Delish.

We then headed to this cool little bar/cafe where one of B’s favorite bands was playing. The band was really good and if I got a little bored, the place had so many bizarre things on the walls that I was easily entertained. Even better, the bathrooms were in the basement and there was a giant koi pond down there and they had placed different Simpsons figurines in with the fish. My brother and I love the Simpsons so the whole thing was just very fitting for the night. And hello! Koi pond in the bathroom.

A couple more friends of his showed up, including a long time friend of his who happens to have the same birthday. Even better, the drummer from my brother’s band (yes, an amazing social worker with a band. I swear he’s not a hippie) bought everyone a couple rounds. I really like his friends and was glad that they accepted Mr. A and I into the group and didn’t let the fact that I am his little sister make it awkward.

After the band finished, all of us went to B’s favorite bar. Now if this were me and my friends, we probably would have gone to the piano bar or vodka bar or to the new casino just because they are busy and fun. This place? Looks like a complete hole in the wall and one of the few bars that still allows smoking inside. But it was so much fun. I need to rethink my choice of establishments because the drinks were cheap and it was laid back and a blast. We played shuffle board and putting me and my brother on opposite teams just made it super competitive. I don’t know that I have laughed so much with a group of people that I hadn’t met before.

Now, this bar was supposed to close at 1. But my brother has been going to this bar for 10 years and is practically BFF with the bartender, so he let us all stay till about 2. By this point, a lot of the people were pretty intoxicated, including my brother. Luckily Mr. A and I paced ourselves since we knew B wouldn’t be. It was his birthday.

Then B decided he wanted to go to another place right down the street that stays open till 3. Some of the others didn’t really want to and thought going to the diner next door would be better. Who doesn’t love a diner with bad coffee and super greasy food at 2am? Well, my usually calm and very go with the flow brother said, “There will be no vote. I’m going in here. You can come or not. Whatever.” HA! Of course he thought this was the funniest story ever the next day.

…And I just realized I’ve written a whole lot about just Friday night. Oops!…..

Our plan was to wake up early Saturday so we could go do several things before we headed to my dad’s, but since we didn’t get home till 3:30am, that didn’t really happen.

We had lunch at Qdoba because I am in love with their Mexican gumbo. We then headed over to a running store a friend had recommended to me so they could help me pick out some good running shoes. The ones I’ve been using are pretty terrible and since I can see that I’m staying dedicated to running, my dad agreed to buy me some real running shoes as a birthday gift. The guy there was amazing and so friendly. I was afraid they would think I was an idiot since I’m completely new to this running stuff and had no idea what I needed. But he was super helpful and watched me walk and run to see how my feet and ankles moved so he could tell what I needed and how much support. I finally settled on a great pair of Brooks. They aren’t the incredibly bright and fun colors I was hoping to get, but they felt too darn comfy to pass up. I was even able to run a little bit on them to make sure they wouldn’t rub and such. (and if I wasn’t dying of a cold, I would be going for a run today. Not so much.)

Around 4 we headed over to my dad’s house for family birthday. And one thing I love, even though my parents are divorced and both remarried, both sets of parents were there, and have been for every birthday. My dad and step-dad both get along and there have been instances where one or the other has helped out or done a favor. It’s truly amazing that even though my parents were divorced, I would never in a million years say that I grew up in a broken home. I had two homes that were filled with so much love and support that I might have been luckier than some of my friends who had married parents that didn’t get along very well.

We had so much fun. Sometimes these family get togethers can be a little draining. Someone drinks too much. Someone takes jokes too far. I Someone usually gets their feelings hurt. But not this time. Everyone was joking and laughing and just having a great time. B and I both got some pretty good presents. He got concert tickets and a personalized and handmade harmonica and some other stuff. I got my new shoes, some clothes, and speakers for my ipod. But the best were the tickets to see Avenue Q in a few weeks and Cardinals baseball tickets for the end of next month. Oh yeah, and a new Cards jersey. Yes yes yes. I love baseball season and the Cardinals.

Sunday we went to Five Guys with my mom and step-dad for my actual birthday lunch. Nothing fancy but delicious. And since I was already completely over my calories for the day, I decided calories don’t count on your birthday and Mr. A took me to Coldstone. And now, they have a gooey butter cake/cookie flavored ice cream and it tastes exactly like it. (Quick poll: those of you not from STL, do you even know what gooey butter cake or cookies are? I was told it was a STL thing, but not sure if that’s true or not…)

We also went to Petsmart since they had adoption drives every weekend. It may seem dangerous to go look at cute and adorable puppies and dogs, but since it is in no way possible for us to have a dog, it’s okay. But I did fall in love with a Scottie/Schnauzer mix named Lancelot. He had the sweetest face and the nicest eyes and was just wonderful. Hope he went to a good home with people that would play with him lots.

We then walked around the mall and as one of my gifts, Mr. A bought me a VS Cards shirt. If you haven’t seen them, they have some super cute baseball shirts and they have them for every team I think and which one they have in store would just depend on your location, but I believe you can order any team from online. They are cute and fitted and not as expensive as the registered MLB shirts. And probably cuter. (And I will be wearing mine Thursday since it’s opening day.)

After all of that, we headed back here to Cville. A friend brought over some movies for us (Tangled is so freaking cute!) and Mr. A gave me my other gift. I cried reading the message he wrote in the card. He’s not always super romantic, but reading his words just shows me how much he loves me and how truly lucky I am to be married to not only my best friend, but an amazing man. And his gift wasn’t huge or expensive, but he know that I love the Disney movies and it depresses me that they’re going to put them in a vault and I want my kids to be able to see them, so he bought me Snow White since it disappears this week. I will probably be watching it this afternoon.

So there it is. Never meant for it to be this long. So sorry. How was your weekend? Anything exciting?

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Birthday Present to You

March is my favorite month. Weather starts to get warmer. It’s the anniversary of Mr. A and I dating. Even more so, it’s my birthday!

I love birthdays. Love them. I always joke that I will be 90 years old, in a nursing home, and still excited about my birthday. I love the fun and the cake and the presents. Yes, presents. I KNOW it’s not about that, but it’s fun to get gifts that my loved ones thought about and put effort into.

But, this year, I’m not as excited. I don’t really know why.

It’s not a big deal number. We get to go home, and while I’m excited for that, there isn’t the level of anticipation that usually hits me on March 1st. Also, my actual birthday is a Sunday, so no real fun on the actual day.

So I thought I would do something different.

I’m giving one of YOU a birthday gift.

Yes, you wonderful readers have a chance to enter in for a giveaway from me.

So, what is in this fun little birthday basket?

First, you will get to choose between 3 different cookbooks. All focus on healthy eating, but I know people look for different things, so no point in me forcing one on you!

A. Bethenney Frankel’s The Skinnygirl Dish

skinnygirl (source)

or

B) Hungry Girl 300 under 300

hungry girl (Source)

or

C) Cooking Light Complete Cookbook

cookinglight (source)

All of these look great and I’m trying to share my new ways of trying to eat healthier. (Just ignore my tweet about the DQ tonight. I AM a girl after all…)

But a birthday package of just a healthy cookbook is lame. And I don’t want to be lame.

So, to add, I will throw in a $20 gift card to:

whole foods

WHOLE FOODS!!!

You can use it for food for your new recipes in your new cookbook. Or if you use it on their awesome wine and dessert selection, I won’t blame you. Just tell me what you bought so I can make sure to get it next time.

If you win and aren’t close to one, we will chat and work something else out.

And because not everything should be about food, I shall throw in a…

iTunes (source)

$15 iTunes gift card!! Who doesn’t love new music? Or a movie? Or some apps for your fancy schmancy phone?

And knowing me, I might just throw in some other small treats just because…

I think it looks like a pretty awesome birthday basket. I hope you do too!

By now you are wondering how to enter this little deal. And I will make it simple for you.

All you have to do is leave me a comment telling me about your favorite birthday present/event/occasion/tradition.

You can get a bonus entry if you write a second comment with a link to your blog or Twitter account, even if I already follow you and read your blog. And if you’re new, it’s a good way for me to meet you! If you don’t have either, tell me one fun fact about yourself and we will call it even.

So you have TWO chances, but please put them as separate comments and please include an e-mail address in each so I can easily reach you!

I will use the random number generator to pick.

You have until 11:59pm Thursday March 24th to enter. No late entries will be allowed. And then, if all goes to plan, I will mail the package on Friday so the lucky winner will have their “birthday” present early next week!

 

Good luck!!

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The post is password protected because it has to do with work and I am not comfortable just leaving all of that public. BUT, I DO want you to read it, so either ask me on Twitter @NewTeacherWife or send me an e-mail at newteacherwife {at} gmail {dot} com and I will let you know.

 

Thanks!

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4 Days Off

This past Wednesday, when I got off work at 6, Mr. A and I headed south to Mville. I hadn’t seen his family in a long time and we were both excited to get out of town for a little while.

It started perfectly since MIL had dinner waiting for us when we arrived. Nothing fancy, but for some reason I lovelovelove her stroganoff, so it was perfect. And since it was 8:30pm, I was starving. We talked and caught up on a few things.

Even better? She knows we don’t have cable and my love of all shows on Bravo, so she recorded Bethenney, Real Housewives Orange County and Miami, Millionaire Matchmaker, and Million Dollar Listing. She spoils me that woman. So yes, I watched a lot of tv while at the house and it was glorious. And making me miss cable even more now that I’m home. One day…

We spent Thursday running around and just relaxing. We had fun seeing the town and I enjoyed laughing how excited the people in that crazy town were so damn excited about a new gas station. You would have thought they were told the South really had won the Civil War or something. Amusing.

Thursday night we went to our favorite Thai/sushi restaurant. For a small town, their sushi is some of the best we have found anywhere. And since we have NO sushi here, I was so very excited. MIL came with us and we had a fantastic dinner. Mmmm…sushi. Might have to get some in STL this weekend for my birthday.

Friday we went to this tiny BBQ place and took our food out to the lake and had a little picnic. The BBQ was amazing and I gave Mr. A a hard time for never taking me there during the 5 years I lived in that town. He claims it never crossed his mind since it is a little out of the way. The lake was beautiful that day and it was nice to get to sit outside in the sun.

That night we headed out to our favorite bar with a bunch of Mr. A’s friends. These are guys he’s known his whole life, including his best man and groomsman. They are a riot and I have missed having true, good friends around. They treat me like a sister, except with more dirty jokes and harmless flirting. G, Mr. A’s best friend had become one of my friends and while I never ever ever want to move back there, I miss him and his girlfriend and all the fun we have. Lots and lots of drinks were had. MIL had given me some “pre-birthday” money to use for the night. She spoils me people. I think she just likes having a daughter. One guy puked in the back of another guy’s car. It was funny just because of who it was. And made me miss undergrad and how carefree we all were. I wish I could go and tell myself that undergrad wasn’t that hard and I just needed to enjoy myself.

However, with all the fun that I had, I’m pretty sure I got food poisoning. Yes, I drank quite a bit, but when I went to bed Saturday morning, I no longer felt drunk and I wasn’t my usual dizzy from laying down or any of that. I was fine. But when I woke up in the middle of the night, sicker than anything, I knew something was wrong. We had some leftover pizza when we got home and since Mr. A was also not feeling so hot, we think it was the pizza. I was sicker than anything ALL day Saturday. We went for a walk around campus, just so I could get some fresh air and hoping getting out of the house would help, and while it helped some, I was still pretty miserable. We grilled at home with the parents that night and I ate as much as I could hold down. (Between my stomach issue and the BIL’s gf’s inability to chew with her mouth closed and not smacking, it was hard to keep anything down.)

This morning we got up and went to church. We have yet to find one here we like, so it was nice to go. They have gotten a new pastor in the last few months, so I was worried, but he was really great. And something just clicked with me today. Whether it was the message or the guy delivering it, not sure, but I loved it and am determined to find one here that doesn’t lead me to analyzing the stained glass and reading the bulletin a hundred times.

After church, MIL took us out to lunch and then we packed up and headed home.

It was a really great 4 days. Mr. A and I got along great. That sounds strange but sometimes going home brings out weird things in us and causes us to get short with one another. Spent a lot of great quality time with my MIL. Step FIL was being jerky, but he does that sometimes. Pretty sure he didn’t like having lots of people in his house and messing with his schedule. BIL never said a word to Mr. A or I and his girlfriend was just over the top obnoxious. Actually, he did say something, but only a smart ass remark when Mr. A was telling his mom about a big thing that happened at school. Whatever. We have both washed our hands clean of him and really have nothing to do with him, at least until he learns how to act like an adult and figures out that he can’t mooch off his parents forever.

It was such a great time and makes me even more excited to go to my hometown this upcoming weekend for my birthday. Family birthday for my brother and I on Saturday and finally getting myself some real running shoes as a gift from my dad. Then, it’s just a few more weeks of the semester, and maybe getting some answers as to where and what we will be doing for the fall!

Lots going on and hopefully a blog giveaway this week. Keep an eye out…

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Filed under Home Sweet Home, Life After College, Married Life, Normal Family?

Borrrrring

I’ve been telling myself for days that I just need to write an effing blog post already. Geeze. It shouldn’t be this hard.

The problem is that I have nothing interesting to write about.

I started a post about working in the men’s department and how it’s a whole other world in that corner, but it was lame and not as funny as actually witnessing some of the shenanigans.

Was working on one about wishing for things after law school. But it felt wrong and just like I was whining and very unfocused.

Have considered several posts about some of Mr. A’s classmates. But while I say I could care less if they found this and knew that I thought they were a bunch of shallow idiots, he still has to go to school with them and he’s had a rough semester as it is.

So here I am. Another brain dump because nothing exciting is going on. I don’t know anything new.

**This Wednesday when I get off from work, we are headed to Mr. A’s hometown, Mville. (For anyone new, I went to undergrad in Mville and that’s where we met.) I’m actually pretty excited about this. Until last week when she came up and took us to dinner, I hadn’t seen my MIL since Christmas. And while she was annoying me at the beginning of this marriage, I really do love her and she is hilarious. I lucked out with a great MIL and I’m happy to spend time with her for a few days. She will make us margaritas. We will grill steaks. She will fill us in on the local drama of the small town. (Which could be a great blog post because man oh man some of the things that happen there…) MIL, Mr. A, and myself will join in on making fun of BIL’s awful girlfriend and hope and pray she goes away soon. We will see some college friends and childhood friend of Mr. A. We will gorge on sushi at one of our favorite sushi places anywhere, and even more so since there isn’t a single sushi place here. It will be four days of relaxing and I can’t wait.

** I have put our Netflix instant queue into overdrive as we are watching all of Grey’s Anatomy. We’re only on season 3, but seeing as each season has like 20 episodes, there’s a lot of storyline to cover. Even better? Mr. A actually likes it, so we watch it together and he got mad the other day when I watched a couple without him and he made me rewatch them with him. HA! Also, much better to watch back to back so I know what happens next. I can’t imagine waiting a week to find out of Meredith lives or not after falling into the water on triage day. These are definitely white girl first world problems.

** It’s pi day! I didn’t really think about it until this morning, but decided to bake a pie after work. It is currently in the oven and our apartment smells fantastic. Blueberry pie, hot from the oven, with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream. Heavenly.

** So, sometimes, I want to ask people on Twitter things, but then I get super nervous and wimp out. And it’s usually either about their job or about something they do as a hobby or about something they said. But I don’t want to intrude. And if it’s about their job, I think they probably get asked enough and I should just leave them alone. But so many questions….

** I am in a pant size that I haven’t been able to wear in a while. YAY! Still have a LONG FREAKING WAY TO GO, but it’s progress. And I’m about 3 pounds from a big milestone, so I’m trying to keep at it. Of course, this pie tonight might just set me back. 🙂

**Also, God has a sense of humor. For the past couple weeks, everytime I’ve said, “Tomorrow I am definitely going running”, the next day is either super cold or raining. And I’m not running in either, mostly because I just don’t have the proper attire to not freeze to death. Today was one of those days and I was really bummed to not be able to go for a run after work. Hopefully tomorrow. But don’t want to jinx myself again.

** In a little less than 2 weeks it will be my birthday. And I usually LOVE birthdays, but this year feels a little strange. I know what my mom got me. My dad said he would pay for some good running shoes for me, so no surprise because I doubt he’ll get anything else. Mr. A and I decided he could get something, but it had to be pretty inexpensive since we are on kind of a tight budget. MIL asked what I wanted, but she has helped out so much financially, that I can’t possibly ask her for anything. And I know birthdays aren’t about presents, but there seems to be no excitement about it this year. Oh well. At least it’s not a big number.

** No news about grad school. I’m getting super antsy and religiously checking the mail everyday. Applied for that school I was talking about. Turns out my dad knows and works with the principal since he is working on their brand new school. Hopefully that will help because if I were to get the job AND grad school, I’d take the job. The pay is amazing. It’s closer to where we want to live. And I’m sure the school would pay for my grad school after a year. And did I mention the pay? Yes please. (Also, if I get the job, I’m getting a dog. No matter what. I’ve told Mr. A and I think he’s going with it because I sounded pretty darn serious when I said it. And we had just been to Petsmart during a pet adoption and we both fell in love with a puppy but we obviously couldn’t get him. Sad day.)

** There has been a TON of baby news on Twitter and the blogs recently. And I am so excited for each and every family! Since we won’t be having babies anytime soon, it’s fun to hear about what they are going through and learning things and such. Babies are just cute and squishy and I can’t wait to have my own. In 3 years. And no sooner please.

 

**Also, was thinking about doing a giveaway for my birthday, but need ideas of what to giveaway. What do you want? Do you like gift cards? Gift packs-if so, what kind of theme? Sports stuff? Girly things? I want to help you win free things, but you have to help me with what you people want! I only try to please…..

 

**And since nothing new is happening with me, what’s up with you all? Fill me in.

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Filed under Blogging, Life After College, Life in Law School (even if I'm not in it), Things I Love

The Customers I’ve Met

Retail is a funny thing.

I mean, we all go shopping and spend time in stores and, personally, I never paid too much attention to the sales people or other customers around me. I like to be left alone when I shop, so I probably avoid sales associates as much as possible. ( See? Still don’t like talking to people I don’t know…)

But now that I am the sales person, I’ve noticed all sorts of things. Particularly, how strange some people are. Working with the general public can give you a greater appreciation for your friends and family who are “normal” in comparison. And since some people have done posts about the lawyers and clients you meet, I figured I could do the customers I’ve met.

* The Quiet/Aloof Shopper:

I like these shoppers. They are like me. They are nice and polite, but when asked if you can help, they say no and that they are just looking and such. They are nice about it and usually don’t make too much of a mess. Some even go out of their way to put things back where they found them. If they have a real question, they ask. Some are even a little talkative if you can find a connection and usually pretty funny. The only downfall is that a lot of times they really aren’t going to buy anything and are just looking. But, I’m okay with it. I’d rather have nice customers that don’t always buy a lot than rude and obnoxious ones who buy a bunch.

* The Rude Wants-to-be-Left-Alone Shopper

They also don’t want help, but they are super rude when you say hi and offer to help them find something. They don’t usually buy much, if anything and go through your department like a tornado. And as I’m mostly in intimates and swim right now, it gets demolished pretty easily. And they don’t like little jokes and look at me like I’m an alien.

* The Rude but Needy Shopper

These customers are also rude, but they also seem unable to do anything on their own, include decide what they like or are looking for. They demand your help and full attention, yet they don’t like anything you pull for them and can’t tell you what they DO want. These people drive me nuts especially since they are so picky and they can’t do anything on their own, so they buy nothing but use all your time when you could be helping someone else.

* The Old Ladies

They could go one of two ways. Some old ladies are super nice and funny. I love the ones who are still stylish and have some sense of what is still in style and know their granddaughters don’t want to wear turtleneck dresses to homecoming and prom. (I also have dresses in my department.) They love to shop and spend their newfound free time shopping.

But then there are the cranky old ladies. They can’t believe what the styles have come too and they want me to find everything for them. They are just generally cranky. And they have a rude remark for everything. And when it comes to the home store…they don’t know what they want but you are supposed to read their minds. I avoid them.

* The Old Men

The men’s store is a different world anyways. They have many more items that require special knowledge and I’ve been thrown into the department and it’s rough. And while the older men are usually nice, they also expect a sales associate that is working back there to know everything possible and don’t like the excuse “I’m filling in here and I usually don’t work in this area”. I like these guys as long as they aren’t looking for a suit since I know NOTHING about suits. THey make jokes. Sometimes hit on the girls. But usually all around nice guys. And they will tell you a million stories and talk your ear off if you let them. Also, if they look lost and you ask if you can help, their most common responses are either “I’m just waiting for my wife to finish shopping so we can leave” or “I’ve lost my wife so I came back here. I figure she’ll come look for me.” HA! Love them.

* The Young Men

These guys are funny. They usually don’t want help, but they often times look lost. The most fun are the ones who are buying their first dress shirt and tie for whatever event/interview/job that has come up. Had a guy who had an interview in an hour and walked out wearing the dress slacks, shirt, and tie. They also stick to what they know when looking for jeans or shirts that aren’t dress clothes. They aren’t too chatty and like to be left alone. Not mean, just very independent.

* The I-can’t-Shop-Alone-but-Have-No-One-With-Me

These people are super needy. They want you to be their personal shopping buddy, which would be fine if we had enough people working, but we don’t, so this is problematic. The worst is when they want your opinion and they don’t look the greatest in something. I try to find something that might be better or a different size. Being tactful is a big part of this job. It is nice to get to interact with people on a closer level. They will tell you their life story. But if you have to help anyone else, it’s a personal attack on them. It’s a balancing act.

 

There are others. The angry ones. The lonely ones. The teenage girls. The moms that let their children destroy everything in their path. The ones who shop in the store 4-5 times a week and always manage to find something new to buy. They all add to our lovely cast of characters.

And some days I get some truly wonderful customers that make my day. Like the woman who bought me a chocolate bar just for helping her. And then there are the ones I help catch shoplifting and they take off running. Always something exciting.

Now off to work I go. Hoping for the nice ones tonight. But at least the rude ones add some entertainment.

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