Home Sweet Home

Last time I had five free minutes to update this thing, I was eagerly awaiting the day I could move into my new apartment. I moved in about two weeks ago and I’d like to say I’m all settled in, but I’d be lying. Actually, there’s still stuff in the old apartment I need to go get. It’s stuff I don’t use all too often and I’ve honestly contemplated just throwing all of it out.

The move allowed me to cross some things off my list but not as many as I had hoped for. I had planned to go through A LOT of my stuff before I moved but I just didn’t have the time. I’ve actually been throwing out stuff as I’ve been unpacking. Not ideal, but it’s working. I also was able to cross off some other things that I didn’t have planned – last week I went to a Union game out of the blue!

I’ll keep this update short because I have a lot of other writing to do – 13 things that I’ve crossed off the list don’t have posts yet!

Coming Attractions: SUMMER

The weird thing about working in education is that I still view the year starting at the end of August and ending at the end of May, just like I did when I was a student. Unfortunately, I’m no longer a student and I don’t get that nice summer vacation that my students do. Some professors and administrators (and other people who have no idea what we do in my office) think that we either don’t work during the summer or that the summer is incredibly slow. That couldn’t be farther from the truth! The summer is actually one of our busiest times of year – with fewer students on campus, there’s finally some time to do all the things we couldn’t finish during the school year. The first thing on that list for me is cleaning my office – I don’t even want to talk about what it looks like right now.

But enough about work…what am I doing with my summer?? Check it out below! (Okay, fine, some of these things will involve work…sorry.)

May

Classes just ended, so I’m listing all the fun stuff starting with this coming weekend…which is when I am going to see The Killers in concert again!! After that, I get to attend the annual Junior League dinner and chaperone a trip to Atlantic City. I get to bring a bus buddy, so my friend Kristy will be coming to AC with me. At the end of the month, I’ll be moving into my new apartment.

I saw The Killers last summer in concert. So excited to see them again!!

June

June kicks off with the Lilly Pulitzer Warehouse sale. I went last year with both my little and another sorority sister, Jackie. Jackie is coming back down again this year and I’m crossing my fingers that my favorite Lilly Pulitzer dress will be there and in my size.  I don’t think I have any other social plans for June, but I will be working on housing assignments for the incoming students which should take up quite a chunk of time.

This is what happens when sorority girls go to a Lilly Pulitzer sale AND outlet shopping in the same weekend.

July

July starts with a nice long weekend thanks to how the 4th of July holiday falls. I was on duty the last two 4th of July weekends, so I’m going to make sure I don’t have to take duty that weekend this year! I’m not sure what I’m going to do during 4th of July, but I’ve been discussing some ideas with my friends. Later that month is my family reunion in Upstate New York.

Lilly loves getting to go out on the boat.

August

Unfortunately I don’t get to do too much in August…we have RA training. We are changing up RA training so I’m actually looking forward to it. My birthday is in August, so I’ll have to celebrate it before training and after classes start.

Reno celebrating my birthday last year with some random Berks County hipsters.

…just noticed that I didn’t include cleaning my office on here…whoops. I’m hoping to cross a bunch of things off my list and hopefully add some new ones!

Let’s Talk.

Hi. Hi there. We may not know each other personally, but I think you all know my future husband. No, no, we’re not engaged yet or anything. And he might not know…no, he definitely doesn’t know I exist. But we all know he exists and that he’s beautiful. So who might the lucky man be?

Meet Adam Levine – Maroon 5 frontman and my future husband.

Unfortunately something terrible happened last week. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about it and while at first I nearly made a rash decision, I’ve spent some time thinking about it. See, I almost demoted Adam on the husband list. (In case you’re curious, the runners up include Prince Harry and Brandon Flowers). But, you know, it’s really cruel to dump someone in the aftermath of a tragic accident, so I’m taking some time to consider it. And to see if things get better. Oh yeah – I guess I should tell you what terrible thing happened. Adam Levine bleached his hair.

This is a thing.

Tragic. I have yet to find anybody that actually likes it. I’ve been taking a survey at work and the closest I’ve come to finding someone that likes it is someone who did not check yes or no, but rather wrote “well he’s still sexy”. Not the point.

The first thing it reminded me of was Eminem. More specifically, the song “The Real Slim Shady”. Do you remember the music video for that song? Well…I’m pretty sure bleached-hair Adam Levine was one of the fake Slim Shadys in the background.

We’re gonna have a problem here.

The next thing that I thought of was Anderson Cooper. The look totally works for that silver fox, but NOT Adam Levine. In fact, Anderson Cooper actually made a joke about it – he’s created a short list of how to tell them apart. While I’m not a fan of the overall situation, it does open up the possibility for a CNN/The Voice crossover…I might pay more attention to the news if Adam Levine was on the TV.

And hey, maybe we’d get some laughs from Anderson Cooper judging a musical competition…

But I think my FAVORITE comparison has to be what one of my RAs shouted the first time she saw a picture of bleached-hair Adam Levine. She didn’t see Anderson Cooper or Eminem. She saw Draco Malfoy. And I can totally see that. Can somebody please photoshop bleached-hair Adam Levine into a set of Slytherin robes?

Mind if I Slytherin?

The good news is that hair grows and this could very soon be a thing of the past. What do you think of Adam Levine’s hair?

It’s Complicated: Moving

I started writing this when I first found out I was moving a month and a half ago…I should probably stop writing about packing and start ACTUALLY packing.

When I first found out I was moving, I was excited for two reasons. One, a new apartment sounded awesome! Two, it meant I was going to be able to cross a LOT of things off my list. I decided to see how many things could be crossed off by this move and came up with FIFTEEN!! Considering my list just passed the 150 mark, that’s a pretty big chunk! While I still plan on writing posts for each thing as I accomplish them, here’s a sneak peak of what I hope to do in the coming weeks!

Before the big move…

17. Get rid of all the shoes I never wear. I try to keep all of my shoes in one of three places in my current apartment: in the shoe organizer hanging in my closet, in an old wicker basket in my closet, and on a shelf in my closet. There are a lot of shoes there and I’m pretty sure I wear MAYBE 1/3 of them on a regular basis. While my new apartment is larger, it has less closet space, so I need to get rid of things I’m not using!

41. Make my t-shirt pile smaller. See above. T-shirts are currently one whole shelf in my closet. I do have “make a t-shirt quilt” on my list as well so maybe I can kill two birds with one stone!

87. Properly recycle my old laptop. My college laptop finally kicked the bucket a few months after I moved into my current apartment. It’s been sitting in a closet ever since. I don’t want to just throw it out so I’m going to have to find out where I can bring it.

92. Sell the stuff I say I’m going to sell. I’ve got a Coach bag, some old J. Crew and Lilly Pulitzer stuff, plus some old stuff for the dog that I’m not using anymore. The school has a “Community” email that people use to advertise items for sale, so I’m going to try that first!

After the big move…

22. Organize my giant bookshelf. In order to move the shelf, I’m going to have to unload it first. As I’m putting things back on it, I can try to make it look nice and organized. (And it will finally serve it’s purpose of room divider!)

36. Buy a couch. My current couch came with the apartment and it’s a bit broken. There’s no point in moving it to the new apartment, so I’m on the hunt for a new couch!

37. Buy the rest of my bedroom furniture. This is the one that I’m not 100% sure if it’s happening yet. I guess I’ll see how things work out in the new apartment!

56. Fix/finish the gallery wall in my living room. For some reason, there’s one picture frame that always falls off the wall. In my new apartment, I think I’ll be able to hang things with nails.

57. Decorate my bedroom. No point in starting this before I move!

58. Hang my flag. Same as #57! Plus, it will be easier to do with nails.

59. Plant something and have it grow. I’ll have a little patio at my new apartment, so I want to try a small container garden this summer.

95. Live somewhere with in-unit laundry. It’s been a long and bumpy road to get to the point of all of the ADs moving into new apartments, but one of the things that happened during that time is some of the campus administrators did a tour of our current apartments. One of the things they noticed is that not only were the apartments very different in terms of size and condition, but they also had different amenities. While our new apartments will all be different sizes again, they will all have washers and dryers!

96. Live somewhere with a dishwasher. I’m 99% sure that the apartment I’m going to move into has a dishwasher.

134. Organize my closets. This goes along with organizing my shelf. I have to empty my current (and somewhat organized) closets in order to move the contents to the new apartment. As I put things away, I’m hoping to make them a little more organized. That, and I don’t have too much of a choice since I’ll have less room for storage.

135. Organize the entry way. Right now, my entry way is a narrow, dark hallway with a small shelf and a bunch of closets. The stuff I use most often SHOULD be on the shelf, but it’s currently home to…I’m not even sure what. In my new apartment, there really isn’t a dedicated entry – the door opens right into my living room. But there are certain things that need to live by the door like Lilly’s leash and my umbrella. I’ll have to create some sort of entry nook in the new place.

 

While I’m really excited to move, I’m not the biggest fan of the actual moving process. I really wish I could just go to sleep tonight and wake up and be all settled in my new apartment. If you have any moving tips, please feel free to share them!

It’s Not Going to Happen

(Slightly over) Six months ago, I came up with this crazy idea to try 300 new-ish things before I turned thirty. The list itself is still under construction, but I find myself constantly coming up with new ideas. Some of these make it to the list, some of them don’t. I’m trying to keep everything on the list somewhat realistic and possible.

Even though I’m only six months in, I already know that there are some things that are just not going to happen. In fact, I knew it somewhat at the beginning and included #29, donating $5 for every task NOT completed to charity. I’ve already had to amend the amount I’m saving – $30 per task was a little too much on my meager income.

Going through my list recently, I saw another one that I just don’t think is going to happen – #78, use all my tanning credits. No, no, it’s not because tanning is bad for you. I KNOW that it is, but I’m also super pale. I have trouble buying foundation because no company manufactures a shade called “Casper” which is probably the only thing that would match my white face. I usually go once every week or two so when I moved to Reading, I looked for a place that would let me buy a package of sessions rather than paying a monthly rate. As usual, things kept coming up and I didn’t use up my sessions before they expired.

I’m sure there will be other things on this list that I won’t be able to cross off and perfectionist-me needs to be okay with that!

I’m Baaacckkkkkk

The last time I updated this blog (over a month ago, whoops) I mentioned that I was sick and work was crazy. Looking back, that might have been the biggest understatement  since the time Bill Clinton uttered “I did not have sexual relations with that woman”. (Sorry 90s kids, I’m on a mid-to-late 90s SNL kick.)

I’ve probably used work being “crazy” for a few missing posts by now. Back when I was in college, I used to think that I’d have so much free time once I was working a “real” job. I was incredibly wrong. I miss having my free time scattered throughout the day – it forced me to get stuff done! Now I get home at the end of the day and am just exhausted. I don’t want to do the dishes or my laundry or clean or work on my blog. It doesn’t help that during the past month, I’d come home from work and just open the laptop and get right back to work from the comfort of my living room. That’s a habit I really need to break.

Why has work been so crazy? Earlier this year, we found out my boss wasn’t going to be coming back from her maternity leave. She had decided to stay home with her newborn son. I don’t blame her at all! Half the time I don’t want to leave Lilly to go to work! But since it was unexpected, we did not have a replacement for her and clearly there were tasks she did that need to be done. We split them up and I somehow wound up with housing selection. Housing selection is not easy. Housing selection is long and painful. Oh – and I didn’t know anything about housing selection going into it. For three weeks, I was working every hour I was awake on every single day – including when I was in Boston! The process is nowhere near done, but now that I know what I’m doing, it’s much easier!

So onto that other part…being sick. When I first wrote that, I had a sore throat. That’s all. My throat had been bothering me in the mornings for about a week prior and coming back to Reading from Joplin made me feel TERRIBLE. I blame the major change in the weather. Eventually I felt so miserable that I went to the doctor – not something I normally do. It turned out that I had strep throat. I was given antibiotics and told to take some time off work, but since it was right at the beginning of housing selection, my “sick days” were really “work from your bed so you don’t contaminate the office” days.

Around this time, I also discovered a lump in my breast. Now, this isn’t the first time this has happened – it happened when I was 16 and 19 and both times I was told it was nothing and that I was just “a growing girl” (which is a big fat lie cause my boobs haven’t changed since ninth grade). But this time it was right where my underwire is and it actually hurt to wear a bra, so I had it checked out. First they did a needle biopsy, but the doctor wasn’t able to get anything because the lump was rock hard, so they scheduled me to have it removed. I don’t like surgery. Or needles. Or getting put under. Or pain. So I really didn’t stop to think “oh hey this could actually be serious” until AFTER my surgery when the doctor said he’d call with the results. Luckily, everything is fine and I’m just “enjoying” my time at home, recovering from surgery.

My plan is to go back to work this week, although I’m not sure when and for how long…sitting at my big computer just to type this isn’t the most comfortable. I’m still super tired and feel like I’ve been kicked in the ribs. My plans for today include taking the dog for a brief walk, looking at my work email, and maybe working on another post or two. Hopefully this is the start of work slowing down and blogging getting back to speed!

My recovery buddy!

My recovery buddy!

Just Another Manic Monday…

I’m back from Joplin, but unfortunately I’m sick AND it’s a very busy week at work, so I’m not sure when I’m going to be write my Joplin post. For now, I’ll just leave you with my newest Joplin video!

In other exciting news, I found out that I’m going to be moving at the end of May! The building that my apartment is in is going to be renovated over the summer, so I needed to go somewhere. At first there was talk of just moving me for the summer, but the idea of having to move twice (during check out and RA training) made me incredibly anxious. There was a period of time that I knew I was moving but just didn’t know where I was going at that was pretty nerve wracking too. Right before I left for my trip, I found out where my new apartment was going to be and now that there’s only eight weeks to go, it’s time to start packing!

Going through my list, I noticed that a lot of items had to do with where I live. It looks like a lot of things are going to be crossed off during the moving process…I REALLY want to get rid of stuff before I move. Another exciting thing about this move – my new apartment will have a dishwasher AND a washer and dryer. Now that I’m back in Pennsylvania, I kind of just want to skip ahead to the point where I actually move!

It’s Just Another Manic Monday…

I don’t think I’ve done anything off my list since Christmas…and I haven’t written those posts yet! At the rate I’m going, I should just save them for next Christmas…

I clearly haven’t been writing so what have I been up to? Well, first off work has been CRAZY!! Recruitment was a few weeks ago and since then I’ve been really busy with housing selection stuff. There’s also a LOT of changes going on in the office. I’ve been coming home and doing work (after work) and honestly by the end of the night all I want to do is watch TV and lay around with the dog. Here are some other things that have been on my mind or keeping me busy…

Tropical Vacations

It seems like EVERYBODY has been off on some tropical vacation recently! Carly (aka The College Prepster) was just in the Dominican Republic, my friends are off in the Caribbean (jealous), and from what I’ve seen on Instagram lately, Sarah Vickers from “Classy Girls Wear Pearls” and her handsome fiance KJP are on some beach somewhere. Meanwhile…I’m heading to Missouri.

I had so much fun on my vacation with my big and my little last fall that we’ve been talking about planning another trip. We definitely can’t afford Disney again any time soon, but some ideas that we’ve thrown around include a cruise, California, and some sort of beach vacation. By this time last year, we had a lot of details worked out for our October vacation, so we should probably start looking into that soon…

Thirty-One Bags

Recently I’ve been seeing EVERYBODY carrying Thirty-One bags. They’re perfect for if you have to drag a ton of crap around (which I do) and they’re really cute – you can pick different prints and even have the bags monogrammed! I’m a big fan of the “Zip Top Utility Tote“. I’d love to have one to carry all my work stuff around. It’s one of those companies that you have a “party” to order things, so maybe I’ll have one…eventually…when I have time…so after graduation!

The Gym

Back in January, I did join a gym. I’m trying to go three times a week and get in some sort of groove, but my work schedule (not to mention the weather) has been all over the place, so I really don’t have any sort of routine. Coming up with a workout routine that works for me is on my list (#84!) so this is an area that I’m definitely going to work on in the coming months!

An Update on #97

97. Get my hair back to its healthy pre-bleach state.

The last time I saw my hair in it’s natural state was sometime in the early 2000s. It was red and very curly. Annnndddd I hated it. My mom (along with Baz Lurhmann) always warned me that I was going to kill my hair if I kept doing so much to it, and while I really hate to admit it, she was right.

For the longest time, I didn’t do TOO much to it. I used non-permanent dye to dye it darker and I would straighten it occasionally. then I started straightening it more. And then I started bleaching it. Eventually I noticed that it didn’t look as healthy as it once had. It seemed really thin and what really scared me was that my hair no longer curled.

I decided last spring that I really needed to start taking better care of my hair. I went through a six week period where I stopped straightening my hair. Since my hair didn’t curl properly anymore, I just wore it up a lot. It wasn’t attractive. I’ve since gone back to straightening it, but I haven’t bleached it since last March. I am still dying it, but I’m back to using a non-permanent dye that’s just slightly darker than my normal hair color. People ask why dye it at all – if I didn’t I’d have this HUGE line between bleach-blonde and my dark red hair. Then people ask why I don’t just do it once permanently instead of dyeing it once instead of every two – three months – I was given this big explanation by a hairdresser once that I can’t fully remember but apparently permanent dye still has some bleaching agent in it.

In the past month I’ve noticed that my hair has looked healthier. It feels thicker and less damaged. I’m not ready to say that it’s back to its original state, but I’m getting there!! I’m really bad about getting regular trims because I’m always afraid they’ll take too much off, but I think the next step is to get a trim…yikes! Hopefully a year from now I’ll be posting saying that my hair is MUCH healthier!

This was four years ago…I think this was the best my hair ever looked!!

A Haunting in Pennsylvania

I read the Wikipedia article for “The Haunting in Connecticut” after I typed the title. That was probably a poor idea.

My apartment is haunted. I’m sure everybody says that their place of living is haunted at one point or another. You misplace something or hear a strange noise and BAM! Haunted! I think I’ve even made jokes about my apartment being haunted before. Just as recently as last week, I referred to the strange noise that the fridge makes as “the aliens in the kitchen” (okay, so not ghosts, but still paranormal).

Before we get into the good stuff, a bit of necessary back story. About five months after my roommate Lilly moved in, one of my neighbors complained that she barked a lot. This surprised me because Lilly’s rather quiet, considering what she’s mixed with. My mom actually thought that something might be wrong with her because she didn’t bark for the first three weeks I had her. She’s since become a bit more vocal and barks at normal dog things, like when the doorbell rings on a TV show, but I was certain that she did not spend all day barking. I was told that I needed to do something about it, so I wound up buying the Dog Monitor app. My iPad sits in the kitchen watching the door and I can check in on her via my iPhone. I’ve had the app for a few months now, so I’ve gotten pretty good about recognizing certain sounds and knowing where they are coming from. (Oh and in case you were wondering, the dog doesn’t spend all day barking.)

Lilly in her cage during the day. This is what the Dog Monitor app shows me.

Recently, I had an incident where somebody entered the apartment without my knowledge. I was at work and heard someone knocking on the door, followed by someone keying in and yelling, “Hello?” It was just a man from the alarm company, but it scared Lilly and she became not the biggest fan of cage time after that incident. However, I would have never known that it had happened had it not been for my trusty Dog Monitor.

This is Lilly doing her best impersonation of Dobby the House Elf.

Last week, something even more disturbing happened. I was at work when all of the sudden I started hearing this music. It wasn’t a song or tune that I recognized. My co-worker Melissa described it best – she said it sounded like a music box. It was also rather loud. My first thought was that some link I had clicked had music on auto-play. I checked my browser real quick, but nothing there. Then I noticed that my phone was lit up. I picked it up and sure enough the music was coming from my phone through the Dog Monitor app. (I know it sounds absolutely crazy and I’m glad that Liz and Melissa heard it as well otherwise I’d probably have myself committed.) The music lasted about a minute. I’ve tried to come up with some rational explanation for it, but I can’t. It was too long to be someone’s cell phone and the monitor wouldn’t have picked up on it unless it was in the apartment. I don’t know how it could have been an electronic in my apartment – the TV would have needed to turn itself on and then off. I tried to put it out of my mind and carry on with my day.

When I got home from work, I decided to straighten my hair. When I sat down at my dressing table, I noticed that there was a crack in the glass on my jewelry box. I sit at that table every day to do my hair and makeup and had not noticed the crack that morning. I remembered that I had taken a picture of my table a few days prior, so I checked the picture. No crack. I looked around the jewelry box. Nothing had fallen on it, at least nothing that was still out of place. I remembered the strange music from earlier in the day and called my friends. And then, instead of straightening my hair at my apartment, I shoved my stuff into a bag and got ready at a friend’s house. I did not want to be in that apartment!

They say bad things come in threes and the third is what made me finally call security. Before my shower last night, I went to put my earrings into my jewelry box. Yes, the one with the broken glass. When I opened the box, I saw that all of the contents had shifted as if someone had picked it up and tilted it. I normally don’t go into this box, so contents should have been organized instead of laying in a heap. The only logical explanation that I could think of was that someone entered my apartment while I was at work…and seriously at this point I prefer the idea of a burglar to a ghost!

So then I had to send the weirdest email of my life…how exactly do you tell someone that your apartment was either broken into (but nothing was taken) or a supernatural being has taken up residence without coming off as crazy?? Luckily security thought it was just as weird as I did and they sent someone over to make sure that my door wasn’t busted or anything. But seriously how crazy is that?! Melissa invited me to sleep over her apartment, but I decided to be brave lazy and stay in my own bed. Lilly’s at my parents’ for the week, so I was a bit nervous that I wouldn’t have her to protect me, but I survived the night! Too bad “having a totally freaky experience” wasn’t on The List…could have crossed one more off!