Sunday, March 30, 2014

It's like I rediscovered TV

It's my birthday!! WHOOOOO! Another year older. It's been a nice, relaxing day filled with a mediocre cafe (well, their lunch menu was mediocre...the cheesecake I had was delicious), a romantic comedy, and finishing up my book (and now I'm waiting and anticipating the Walking Dead finale...EEK!)  


But THAT is not what my point for this particular blog entry is about. Today is about....My first week of TV for over a year!!!!!

Yep, I have not had any sort of TV for a little over a year. No dish, no cable, nothing but netflix and the internet (which has worked out fine...but some live things I have definitely missed). It was interesting to see what I would gravitate to during my first week of tv....

1. BASEBALL! Thank goodness for Spring Training. I have watched a baseball game a day. It's been fantastic (though I'm quite sad it hasn't ALWAYS been a Twins game..). I've really missed watching that and even though I may not get to watch those Twinkies I will get to watch a wide variety of teams.

2. The Today Show! Seriously...I have no idea why in the world I have been watching The Today show. I honestly don't care about any of it...AT ALL. But each morning by about 8 I had it on because I was already awake. Ridiculous, I know.... But I did watch just to see Shakira one day, so there was a reason once...

3. THE VOICE!!!!! I am SO pumped I have been able to watch it live this week. I normally have to watch like a day later, and I hated it. But HOORAY for being able to watch The Voice while it's happening! I really don't have much else to say about this one. No embarrassment at all.

4. Cupcake Wars... Yes....cupcake wars. How in the heck did I start watching that? I think I was kinda groggy and I though "OHHH I like cupcakes" and then decided that THIS was what I should be watching at the exact moment. They were doing cupcakes for Monster Trucks. Yes...because every time I see Monster Trucks I automatically think that I should find a cupcake. And the cupcakes had to be "manly" because men need manly cupcakes. I just...I dunno. It was stupid.

5. What Not To Wear! Again, not embarrassed. Seriously, can I submit myself to this show? I am sure my style is less than desirable AND who wouldn't love a $5,000 shopping spree. I could go by their rules. I could pretend to put up a fight. I could go for a full out makeover. Oh...that would be lovely. Though the rest on the shows on TLC suck. Seriously. Stacy and Clinton come save me!!!! AND COME BACK ON THE AIR!!!

6. Parks and Recreation. WHY DID NO ONE TELL ME THAT THIS HAD SOLID TWO HOUR BLOCKS ON VARIOUS CHANNELS????? Seriously, my life is complete! I love this series, and could watch all the episodes (well....minus the first season) over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over. I love it.

7. Family Feud. Seriously. How could you not watch this if it's on. You don't technically have to pay attention. You can yell out the better answers when the contestants clearly have NO idea what they are talking about. You can discuss how awesome you'd be on the show. You could laugh as people do ridiculous things. It's awesome.

8. HARRY POTTER WEEKEND ON ABC FAMILY! I don't know what it is, but I ALWAYS watch HP when it's marathoning on ABC Family even though I own all the movies. I don't quite understand why in the world I would sit through this because there's all the commercials. But they have the extended scenes and this weekend they're showing behind the scenes looks at Captain American (but he's not my favorite so I don't know why I'm watching it still). I mean they have all those ads for the terrible TV shows that they show (seriously...what the heck is Twisted and why does that kid have the creepiest mustache in the world?). But yes, ABC Family knows me well. prepare myself for the heartbreaking end of Dobby :(

That's just a list of the few things that I've been watching. I've also DVR'd The Incredibles (uhm, why wouldn't I DVR that one). I've caught up on Vikings. I'm recording the season finale of Walking Dead. I've watched Friends (because that is now on TV just as much as Parks and Rec). I've watched the local news to try to understand WI. And...I've watched a Knight's Tale.

It probably sounds like I've done nothing but stare at my TV for the past week, but I promise I've accomplished other things. I've unpacked a lot of stuff (though there's still more to do). I've cooked. I've taken my car to get fixed (ugh...). I've gone out to lunch with my husband. I've finished a book. and....I FOUND A JOB. 

I think a lil TV watching is ok, at least to get it out of my system so that when I start my job and all it won't be all the time. Plus, I tend to have it on from time to time just for the noise.

Week two of TV will be a little less crazy I'm sure. 

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Hello from Wisconsin!!

I've made it to Wisconsin, my new home. Never would have thought I'd utter that sentence. But, we all know I'd pick Wisconsin over Iowa any day (no offense to anyone I may know from Iowa, but I just don't get that state...). It has been an adjustment, and it's still sinking in that I'm here. I do miss the good old state of MN, and all the things I was used to. Here's a few observations I've made about Wisconsin thus far:
1. Will I EVER get used to Wisconsin apparel being sold in a store instead of Minnesota Apparel? Seriously, I miss seeing my Twins in Target. Unrelated, do people here REALLY like the Brewers? Or do they cheer on another team? This is a serious question. I am not saying anything bad about the Brewers, I've just not been seeing a lot of Brewers apparel like I would Twins apparel in MN.
2. THERE IS BOOZE EVERYWHERE! Seriously, I can go to Target and get beer (and not just like crap beer, good beer) and other beverages of the alcoholic variety any day of the week! Not saying I'm boozing it up in Wisconsin or anything, but it sure is much more easily accessible here.
3. What is it with roundabouts here? I mean there are a ton where I am but I had to make my way through quite a few when I was moving over here on Friday. And man, are they confusing. Seriously. I was so lucky I was following someone or else I would have been lost and on my way to Lake Michigan or something.
4. Since being here I have observed a lot of stores and restaurants that you don't really see a lot anymore, and I am curious as to how they are successful. For example...the Sears here is still open and busy. Also, there are a ton of A&W's here. All things that I have seen get closed down. Bizarro. 
5. My husband discovered a really random restaurant that we ate at the other day. The building was clearly just a house at one point, but a spacious house. So the owner has transformed it into a restaurant. Oh, did I say just a restaurant? I meant that it has been transformed into a Mexican Restaurant. Yes. The food was pretty good, and pretty cheap. But the thing that totally threw me was when she asked if we had room for dessert. She didn't ask about dessert, she said "Did you guys save room for one of our homemade cupcakes?" Yes, this restaurant sells cupcakes. Massive cupcakes. Apparently they just opened a coffee shop within the restaurant not too long ago, and she sells giant, delicious cupcakes. She only had 4 different kinds, but I had the hardest time decided. I ended up going with the Root Beer Float cupcake. Yes, the giant mountain on the top is SOLID FROSTING. Not only that, but there was frosting in the middle as well. It's a bit embarrassing, but I demolished the entire thing.

Now those things are not meaning to say that I don't like it here, or can't like it here. I'm adjusting. It is quite the adjustment. I mean it just hasn't hit me yet that this is my home for who knows how long. On the bright side I love my apartment. I think it's only slightly smaller than my house. It's not super drafty. There aren't critters in the walls. Theres a gas fireplace that keeps this place nice and toasty (which really shouldn't be necessary at this point of the year, but that is a different story. My laundry room is right next to my bedroom. There's a dishwasher. We have TV (that may have to be a whole other first week with TV). We have a garage. Really, quite nice. And I've been making some progress as far as unpacking and getting things situated goes (note: some progress. I'm still trying to remind myself that this is where I'll be living).

SEE! Progress!!

I really should get back to unpacking, but I am pretty sure I'm going to call it quits for the day. To be fair, I brought up some fairly heavy boxes today (seriously, books make for heavy boxes. We have a lot of books). I promise I've been productive. I've sent out resumes and everything! Looking for a job AND unpacking is pretty exhausting, I must say. 

Well, I just wanted to write a little update. Hopefully I have some much more exciting things to say later on this week. I really do want to keep family and friends back home up to date on how I'm doing and all that is going on for us. Keep us in your prayers as we continue to adjust to living here.

Oh...I did save the best for last...

Apparently there has been a crazy spreading through. Apparently people here suffer from...OCD. Yes, Obsessive Cullen Disorder.
I promise that is what the bumper sticker says. I realize it's low quality, and I apologize. This is not the only bizarre things that I've seen on cars. Some of the custom license plates have made me shake my head, a lot. I just...I just HAD to share this one. 

And now....a song that I cannot stop listening to. Darn those guilty pleasures.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

It's all happening so quickly.

So....guess who's three days..

Yep, I am. I'm moving about 4 and a half hours away from my hometown. I've been saying my goodbyes (though we ALL know that I'll be back to visit. I'm not just going to leave this area and never come back. I don't think that's possible.) and I've finished up at my job and have been packing all week so that we're reading to load up and head out on FRIDAY. This has seriously been the longest/shortest week ever. There's so much I want to do, but don't have time. And yet there's so much I have to do that I'm running out of time for. It's crazy. I honestly can't accurately explain what is all going on in my head. I'm so excited, yet I'm also pretty sad to be leaving. It's not easy to leave what's familiar. And, let's be honest, it's pretty rare for anyone from our area of small towns to move more than an hour or two away. Seriously, I tell people where I'm moving and they are absolutely shocked that I could ever move that far (which doesn't always help my nerves, but I understand that they don't mean their response to be that way.). It's hard, because I'm leaving so much behind. I'd be lying if I said that I haven't spent a good portion of the last week crying for various reasons.

I've been comfortable here. I've loved my jobs, even if they were part time. I loved being close to my family and my husband's family. They've been so helpful, especially when Jake was gone at all of his military training. Honestly, he and I have hardly lived together over the past year and both of our families have been so helpful. I have some amazing friends in this area (but, let's be honest. We're GOING to make this whole distance thing work. DUH.). I have my own routine with my Zumba class (which I am SO sad about leaving), my church, my favorite small town cafe, and everything else around here. It's so hard to leave. But, I'm starting to think that maybe I'm too comfortable. I feel like I'm not really moving anywhere, and that's why I think this move is SO important for me. I think I need to be pushed out of that comfort zone a bit (or a lot. Let's be honest, getting pushed out of your home state is kind of scary). There's something out there for me, and this move is definitely the start of it. I have never felt the presence of God in my life more than I do now. I mean the move has come together fairly smoothly. We found our apartment quickly. We found a rather large supply of boxes. It was an easy transition out of both of my jobs, and at one of the libraries they found someone right away that could transition right in (which was a little hard to see, I have to admit. I was so glad to see that they wouldn't be struggling to fill it and she is super nice and will be a great fit, but is it ever fun to meet your replacement? No). I have been getting so much support from friends and family as I struggle to pack and getting everything in order for it. You all seriously have no idea how much of a blessing you have been. Whether you have been bringing me coffee, working out with me, or just hanging out with me and giving me a packing has all been a HUGE blessing to me. Thank you so much.

I guess I mostly wanted to update to kind of give reasoning as to why we were moving besides Jake's job. I sometimes worry that people think I just follow him around like a puppy or something. Some of the people have looked less than convinced that I was for this move when I told them, and I guess I kind of want it all set straight. I seriously feel like this is a huge God thing, and it will be so good for us. I am so excited, but I am definitely getting pretty emotional about it as well. I mean I grew up here. I have a friends and family here. There are so many memories of my dad, and I can't say that I haven't been scared that those memories will feel less real when I'm not here. I mean, even the street I live on now holds memories of him. That's been weighing on me pretty heavily lately, which seems silly I know. I know it's a ridiculous thing to even think about, but it's definitely crossed my mind. I know it'll all be ok. I will definitely miss this small town. I mean, on Monday I had to run errands in town and all I had to do was walk a block to city hall and continue down Main Street just finishing each errand. I can just walk to Area 57 and grab a lunch, and normally they know exactly what I want. Or if I walk in and look confused they know exactly what I'll like. I have Jake's family 4 blocks away. My family is about 5 miles away (well except for those darn siblings of mine, but college will do that). I have friends within 20 minutes of my house ( they'll be at least 4 and half hours...). I live an hour away from the Twin Cities and those fantastic MN Twins that I will NEVER stop cheering for (sometimes I just don't cheer as loudly and offer constructive criticism. And yes, me saying "Just bench Plouffe already" definitely counts as constructive criticism...right???). This is all new, and it's not the easiest. But I know for a fact that God doesn't always make things easy, but when He has a plan it's going to work out exactly how He intends it to.

So now I just want to thank you all. To all those that have been praying for us, helping us, and encouraging us...thank you so much. You have been such a blessing for us during this process. Thank you so much. Please keep us in your prayers. I still need a job, and it's going to be a definite adjustment for both of us. But we encourage visitors (once we get unpacked and stuff obviously)! And we have a lot of different occasions to be back for throughout the coming year, or we can create occasions for me to come back for. I am actually going to attempt to keep this fairly up to date. I know, shocker. I just realize that I am moving away from pretty much everyone I know, so I would love to be able to keep you up to date on how things are going in the land of cheese. But feel free to keep in touch with me too! Facebook me. Email me. Call me. Text me. Facetime me. Snapchat me. Skype me. Seriously, with technology these days we have so many ways to keep in contact, we just have to make a little time in our schedules to do so. Or we could get creative and go all Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, except maybe not with pants. I was a little weirded out that a pair of jeans just magically fit four completely different girls. And that they would send it all over the world to feel close to their best friends. And that they wouldn't wash them because they were scared to lose the magic. I love the sentiment behind it. I love that story in general, but really...pants?

That's pretty much all I have to say in that area. I can't promise that future blog posts will be interesting. They might be what I'm reading, what TV show I love, how much cheese I've eaten (I am moving to Wisconsin...that's a thing they do right and not just a stereotype?), random ridiculous thoughts or maybe slightly serious thoughts. Who knows where this will go. But my goal for this move is to keep in touch. Because it is entirely possible these days, and we just have to make a little time for it. We make time for so many pointless things during the day, and the fact that we waste time staring at monitors and playing games that can wait over trying to stay in touch with others is ridiculous. Being busy with actual things is understandable, but being busy keeping up what that Bieber kid is doing now a days is not (unrelated, I haven't heard much. Has he decided to stop acting like and idiot and grow up? I sure hope so).

Well, I'm going to attempt to catch up on The Voice so that next week I can be on schedule with it since I WILL HAVE TV! I am pretty excited for that. Not because I'm addicted to TV, but because there have been things (BASEBALL, and other live events) that I really wish I could have seen that night instead of a day or two after the fact. Thank you all so much.

I really love Emeli Sande lately. Her songs are really well done, and most have a fairly positive message. And in the days of Beyonce saying that being a sex object is a positive thing I find this really nice.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Nobody puts Baby in a corner.

Yea...we won't call this a comeback just yet. We'll just call this being wide awake and such and see where it goes from there. Maybe I could make this a thing, but meh. We shall see.

So lately I've been feeling kind of nostalgic. I am 99% sure that this is because I am moving away from my hometown area and starting completely fresh. I have just three more shifts left at the job that I love and then I'm unemployed. And then I pack up all my belongings and move four hours away with my husband. I am so excited, don't get me wrong, but I'm also a little sad. It's sad to leave this job, and it's kind of sad to be leaving the area I am so familiar with. But I have never felt more strongly in my decision to do so. But that is not the point of my writing, the point is nostalgia. It all started with listening to some emo-ish sounding music that I listened to a lot in my high school days (thanks Bert McCracken). I later moved on to something else. Something else that got me through so many difficult Now that is not to say that I whipped out some fancy dance number in my house and felt better about everything. I just decided that whatever movie I watch it had to involve dancing. So I turned to Dirty Dancing.

I must apologize before I go further into this, I am sorry to all of my high school friends and any one else that may have heard me utter the phrase "I don't really like Dirty Dancing." I had this issue where it was hyped up wayyyyy too much. And I expected the world from it, but then was let down. But no worries, I love it now. Just for the dancing (but not for the like grinding stuff, no one needs that). Which made me start making a mental list of just SOME of my FAVORITE dance scenes in movies. So...that's what I'm going to do now. Some (of the MANY) excellent dance scenes in movies. These are in no particular order at all....

Clearly this number makes the cut. Even when I was all anti-Dirty Dancing I thought this particular scene was awesome. The dancing is fun, and obviously the lift is amazing. It just ends the movie on such a high note, and mmmmaaaaaannnnn, nice moves Swayze. Try to tell me this one is not awesome, I dare you. Next...

Another "NO DUH" comes from this final number in Center Stage. I just remembers LOVING those red pointe shoes and just dreaming of having my own. My lack of fellow students that wanted to do pointe in my dance classes kind of crushed that dream, a lot. But seriously, this routine is so awesome. It's not set to the typical classical music (which is one of those HUGE deals in this movie) and it is high energy. I love this movie (this was my other choice to watch tonight, but my husband said no). The acting is terrible, there's no way around that. But the dancing....OHHHHH the dancing. It's excellent. I also love that jazz dance in the studio. The whole for fun dance that she just picked up in an afternoon. It's fantastic. This movie is worth watching, if only for the dancing.

I know that there are people that cannot stand this movie, but I love it. Chicago was one of my favorites for a LONG time, and this particular scene is just awesome. There's so much going on and the dancing is so great, I could watch it over and over again. Seriously, just watching this scene again makes me want to watch the movie. I may be a bit partial to this particular movie because I remember one of my favorite dances from dance class was All That Jazz, but I always liked this one.

Oh man, this one is my favorite. I love this musical and try to watch it every Christmas. How is she so fantastic at dancing? And why does no one dance like this anymore? I just love it so much. I'm sure there are other numbers that show off her dancing even better. I know there are, but I just love this one so much. It's catchy, and she's just too good. I wish I was better at describing how I feel about this, but seriously I just sit and watch it and sing along as she dances. It's so good.

I think that 4 should be my limit for now. I know there are SOOOO many other good dance numbers from movies, and I love to watch them. They've definitely helped me out a bit tonight as I'm stressing about moving and thinking about how I'll miss being in this area. Any others to add? We could create a whole list of them. I'm going to end with this video. I think it's a nice list of SOME excellent dance movies, though I wish the narrator would shut up a bit. Definitely gave me a few more to add to my list.