Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Thanksgiving Chaos

Last Thursday I posed pics from last year's Thanksgiving so I feel the need for an update. Yes, we took another picture of everyone flipping the bird. Here ya go:

(Click to make 'em bigger)

Now be "normal"

Now be obnoxious

No, more obnoxious

My dad and sister

Typical for us

Me and the hubs

Sorry about the washed out bluriness.
My intoxicated sister is no bueno at taking pictures.
Oh, and that's a Thanksgiving tree not a Christmas tree. Don't get it twisted.
And yes, it was also a Halloween tree before this. My family is festive.
No, my sister & I didn't know the other was going to wear purple.
But I'm pretty sure my cousin's planned to both wear the stripes.
They're cool like that. No big deal.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Liebster Award!!

Thanks to Cara at Life, Love & Margaritas for giving me my first blog award! How cool is that?! The answer: Very friggin' cool, thankyouverymuch.

Liebster means "favorite" or "dearest" in German. This award, which originated in Germany, recognizes up and coming bloggers! In accepting this award, I agree to:

*Thank the person who gave me the award and link back to their blog

*Copy and paste the award to my blog

*Reveal the 5 blogs I have chosen to award and let them know by commenting on their blogs

*Pay it forward to 5 blogs


Frankly, I'm surprised anyone is interested in what I have to say. My small following still amazes me so really, thank you readers. You make me smile with every new comment, even if I don't respond back. Sorry, I suck sometimes. Some of my awardees might not even realize I follow them, which I find humorous. Don't worry folks, I'm not a creeper. And they're not all brand-new bloggers, hope that's ok for this award. Now without further ado (yes ado, not adieu... confusing, I'm aware) here are my picks:

1) Holly @ Running In Stilettos 
4) Nikki @ Me 2 We
5) Christina @ Lou Lou Runs Florida

Thursday, November 24, 2011

It's Ok Thursday!

Its Ok Thursdays

Today shall be my Thanksgiving edition J It's Ok...

To not like green bean casserole! Not even a little bit. Or cranberry sauce. Yuck!
To spend hours searching for new appetizer recipes online to try out on the family.
To obsess over gluten-free ingredients because of my cousin’s celiac disease.
To still drink sparkling grape juice like a 12 year old. Yum!
To eat more than one slice of pumpkin pie with homemade vanilla ice cream!
To get a second, make that a third helping of everything on your plate.
To look forward to the stuffing the most! And hope there’s enough to take home.
To not allow any of your foods to touch! Even if this means you only make it through half of the items on the impromptu buffet line the first time around. You’ll have to go back for the rest after you eat what you already have on your plate.
To make up a tiny plate of everything for your cats. What, is that weird? It’s their Thanksgiving too! I only give them a little bit.
To go around the table and say at least one thing you’re thankful for. It’s pretty entertaining in my family. It can be serious or ridiculous.
To take a group photo of everyone flipping the bird, and I’m not talking about the turkey. This was dedicated to my dad for not showing up for the festivities last year. He hates holidays, and now has this framed in his house. Every time someone sees it, they laugh. Our sense of humor is crude and for that I am thankful!

(Click on these to make 'em bigger)

Now with a little attitude:

See the theme in my family here?

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Get this mama an umbrella, we're having a shower!

I'm a little behind on things, but this past weekend I went to my friend Olivia's baby shower. She received lots of nice gifts and a good time was had by all. The cake that Anna Marie's Cakery did was captial A-mazing! (Look her up on Facebook!) Liv isn't telling anyone the name of the baby yet so it'll be a surprise in January, which I kinda like. I wish this growing family the very best and can't wait to meet Baby J! Now if she could only get her husband to put together the crib and paint the nursery! Since I'm feeling lazy, I will sum everything else up in pictures!

Are you surrounded by babies or pregnant people like I am?!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Its Ok Thursdays
It's Ok...
To almost break into song at work with your iPod headphones on forgetting others would be able to hear you because you're not working from home that day, then play it off like a cough. Makes me chuckle thinking about it even now.
To not put up a Christmas tree this year or lights on the house just because you don't wanna. We are borrowing a tiny 2 foot tree from my husband's grandma though so it's a little festive, but the cat's can't climb it and knock off it's ornaments. Because it doesn't have any.
To eat 3 cups of cereal in the morning instead of the recommended 1 cup serving. What? I'm starving!
To think about getting rid of Facebook. I talk about this all the time, but I'm addicted. But I hate it. Yet I love it. I always feel good about my life until I log on and see how many other cooler things people do. Then I feel like a loser. It's a vicious cycle and a preventable one, but I can't hit the delete button!
To know almost everything you're getting for Christmas because you picked it out and it's sitting in your guest room teasing you each day because you can't have it yet. Cruel. Maybe my husband will wrap it so I forget what I got.
To have nothing in your fridge except the staples: Brita water, butter, ketchup, mustard, italian dressing, soy sauce and jelly. Not because we're poor, but because we really only buy enough meals for 1 week at a time and we skipped the store this week because we're lazy. We will never be those people who pack their fridge so full that you can't fit another single jar in and half the things have gone bad, but you didn't know because they got pushed to the back. Gives me chills!
What are you saying "It's Ok" to today?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Could you spell that for me?

Since it seems like everyone I know is having a baby soon, or just had a baby, I want to write about naming a child. I don't have any of my own but I dread the day that my husband and I have to agree on a name for another human being. We will never agree. Naming animals is one thing. You can call a dog Pickles and people like it. But if you name your son Critter, the poor guy will be scarred for life.

Since I grew up with a uncommon name, I've always thought that's what I would want for my kid too. I only know one other Nicolette and I love that. I know there are more, but what I'm saying is it's not like Jennifer or something. Oh wait, that's my sister's name. Sucks for you Jenny! (JK) I also like when names are spelled differently than the "normal" spelling. For example, my niece's name is Kynsleigh. I've only ever seen it spelled Kinsley before so her way is better, in my opinion. But I may be bias on that one.

The problem with almost any name is that at some point you'll be asked to spell it. Even when I say my name and then spell it out like a child "'N' as in nice, 'I' as in indigo, 'C' as in cat...." people still don't know how to say it. Then there are the telemarketers who butcher or shorten it. Even a couple people I work with still call me Nicole. In the words of  The Ting Tings, that's not my name. By the way, one of the worst songs ever, yet I still quoted it. Disturbing.

The new names my friends and family have chosen recently are Leah, Elaina, Kynsleigh, Tenley, and Ethan. All good choices if you ask me. But how do you come up with a name? Isn't it a lot of pressure?! Are you one of those people who have a couple names picked out and say you won't know which name it will be until you see the baby? I don't get that personally. Or maybe you've chosen not to find out the gender so you have to pick a boy and girl name. I don't think I could stand not-knowing, but that's half the fun for many folks. A friend of mine is having her baby in January but she's not telling anyone the name. Maybe that's the way to go. But I wish she'd slip up and say it because I'm dying to know!

I hate when people say "ugh, so-and-so named their baby what I wanted to name mine!" although, I have thought it. I cannot lie. But at least I don't post it on Facebook for the world to see. Plus, how can you call dibs on a name for a baby you're not even pregnant with? You can't. But each time someone gets pregnant, I secretly think "oh I hope they don't pick a name I have on my ever-changing 'when I get pregnant 10 years from now' list". And no, I will not tell you what my favorite names are because then someone will steal it and I will be bitter. So sorry.

So what names do you love or hate?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

It's Ok Thursday

Its Ok Thursdays
I still look forward to this link up every week. Sometimes I think of things to write while sitting in traffic, at work, as soon as I wake up in the morning. Totally normal, right? I hope it never goes away. Seriously, don't even think about ending it. Please and thank you.
It's Ok
To still be thinking of more things to add to your Christmas list even though I'm already well over budget and my husband has even given up part of his budget for me. Love him.
To roll out of bed 5 minutes before I have to log in for work. Working from home 3 days a week is a glorious thing. I highly recommend it if you get the chance.
To vacuum your comforter. Yep. It's a team effort. My husband holds down the corners and I run the sweeper over it to get every bit of cat hair possible off it and out of my face at night.
To let the dishes pile up after dinner because all you want to do is watch Brian Williams on the nightly news. Although, doing dishes burns calories. Dilemmas, dilemmas.
To not have done P90X for almost 2 weeks now. Ugh, we suck. Back to plyometrics tonight!
To be angry about our school levy failing by 8 friggin' votes! They're going to recount but it doesn't look good. Buses are being taken away for the high school and the pay-to-play sports program is going from $60 per kid, per sport to $600! Tell me how that makes sense?! And no, I don't even have kids and have nothing to do with the teachers in the area, I just want the school district I live in to be the best it can be.
To be excited about Thanksgiving coming up! Like, realllllly excited.
To also be excited about Wildlights starting at the zoo soon. Millions of lights all over every tree and building. If you've never been, you need to go. Just dress warm because normally it's bitter cold and no amount of hot chocolate can warm you up that much.
What are you saying "It's Ok" to today?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Kickin' it old school

Remeber the days when cartoons didn't suck? Yea, me too. It was the 90's. I could watch those all day long. No hidden educational crap, just good entertainment. Yea, I said it. My favorite was Rocko's Modern Life. Loved it. Rocko, Spunky, Heffer and Filburt were a good crew. It only lasted 4 short seasons. Tragic.

Another favorite was Doug. His song for Patti Mayonnaise was amazing. In case you've forgotten, it went a little something like this: "Patti you're the pickle in my coleslaw, Patti you're the sugar in my tea, Patti you're the relish on my hot dog, and Patti you're the Mayonnaise for me, whoa, whoa, whoa, Patty you're the Mayonnaise for me!" You'll be singing that all day now. Yea, you're welcome.

Rugrats hold a special place in my heart, but I'm talking about before Tommy's little brother, Dil came into the picture. And don't even get me started on that "All Grown Up" garbage that came out later. That's not the same. They ruined a good thing trying to make it "better". Yuck.

Last but not least is Hey Arnold. It came about a little later than the others, but still pretty good. That crazy football head kid was entertaining with all his dilemmas. But Helga was a jerk. Her eyebrows are awful. Arnold's grandpa gave him the worst advice, but what 80 year wouldn't do the same? Quality programming.

So what were your favorite kid cartoons? Don't even say Ren & Stimpy. Hated it.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Go Bucks!

It’s official. I can check something off my “30 before 30” list! I attended my very first Ohio State football game this past Saturday and LOVED it.
I went with my aunt, uncle and cousin and got onto campus and parked by 9am. We walked to McDonald’s for breakfast and then headed over to St John Arena for the “skull session” with The Best Damn Band In The Land. If you’ve never been, it’s almost like a pep-rally for 10,000 people before the game. The band played, obviously, and coach Fickell and the team came in to say a few words then we left to get across the street to the stadium.
We wanted to do the standard O-H-I-O pose before we went in, so we found a stranger who looked reliable enough not to run away with my camera and snapped a couple pictures. We headed to our seats and watched the band do Script Ohio, which was pretty cool. I’ve seen it on tv, but it’s different when you’re there for some reason. Much cooler.
My cousin and I sat together while my aunt and uncle were a couple sections down from us. We had great seats on the end of a row too, but by about the 2nd quarter, the guy next to us asked to switch because his knee hurt or something and wanted to rest it up on the steps. I hesitated, then unenthusiastically said “okay”. How do you say no?! Ugh. So much for being able to get good pictures without people’s heads in them. I wasn’t thrilled. The weirdest part was that he left his girlfriend on the other side of us so now we’re sitting between this couple. Whatever. 

The game was close the whole time so it made it interesting. We learned all the things the crowd does during commercial breaks too. Instead of the typical wave, the student section would start out yelling “O”, then one side of the stadium yells “H”, then the other end zone yells “I” and the final said, “O” and it starts over. Very cool when over 100,000 people are doing it. We were in the sun most of the game so it was actually really warm, and me being Snow White, came home with a sun burnt face. Yep, in November. Only me.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

It's Ok Thursday

Its Ok Thursdays
It's OK...
To take over an hour to write yesterday's blog post through tears and snot. Yum. Go back a day and read it. It's important!
To listen to songs on repeat. For all 8 hours of the work day. What? I like it.
To have your Christmas shopping almost finished already.
To leave that tennis ball your neighbor accidentally threw over the fence in your yard. If you give it back, you're just going to have to retrieve it again tomorrow.
To take a week off P90X. For us it's more like the P105X plan. Maybe.
To lick your finger and pick up every bit of salt in the bottom of the pretzel bag.
To drive 1 hour and 45 minutes to a baby shower for your friend just to stay a few hours and then drive the 1 hour and 45 minutes home. I'm really excited too!
To buy rabbit food at the store to feed the bunny who lives under your deck. Sadly, he doesn't even appreciate it and won't come anywhere near it. That jerk.
To be probably too excited about my Sat plans of going to the Ohio State football game with the fam! I'll blog about it afterwards because guess what, it's my first! I've lived here my whole life, and now own a house 15 minutes away but I've never gone :\ Plus, I get to cross it off my "30 before 30" list!!! YES!
What are you saying "It's OK" to today?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Lung Cancer Awareness Month

November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month!

Spread the word. If you see people wearing a pearl colored ribbon this month, now you'll know it's for lung cancer. Maybe you're thinking "I've heard enough about cancer lately " but then that's probably because you're fortunate enough not to know anyone affected by it. Congratulations. No seriously, you're lucky. The sad truth is that most people know of at least one person who has had, or has died of cancer. Believe it.

For the rest of us who have had cancer hit way too close to home, keep fighting the battle. Cancer isn't just something that affects the person who has it. It also takes a toll on the family members and friends. Everyone always wants to help, and sure donations to an organization are good, but the real help is standing by your loved one so they know you're in this together.

One of my problems with lung cancer is that many people think those who died "did it to themselves". In a sense you're right, but do you think it makes it any easier on the family and friends? Not everyone who gets lung cancer is a smoker either so did they do it to themselves too? I think not. There isn't enough funding going toward researching lung cancer because there are other cancers out there that get more exposure. People believe lung cancer is more preventable so it gets put on the back burner. Whatever your opinion, the bottom line is ALL types of cancer should be researched. How can anyone say a person who died of breast cancer is more important that someone who died of prostate cancer? You can't. It's still a loss but hopefully we're getting closer to a cure for all cancers every day.

I could spout off the facts but you've heard it all before. Those of you who are smokers will probably continue to smoke. That's your right. I'm not here to lecture you. What I will do is explain what I've gone through and maybe it will make you think twice about your habit.

When I was 18 years old, my mom was diagnosed with lung cancer. I was away in college and separated from the doctors appointments and constant reminders but I never forgot. My parents thought it was best to not fill me in on all the details to "protect" me but it turned out to do more harm than good. I never knew how bad it really was and I never ever thought it would kill her. You're parents are supposed to be invincible, right? Cancer doesn't care.

Two years later after several radiation treatments, chemotherapy and a remission in there somewhere, we lost her. May 1st, 2006 at 11:11pm. "Wish time" will never be the same. She died 13 days before Mother's Day, 27 days before her 54th birthday, 79 days before my 21st birthday and 89 days before my sister's wedding. To say those next couple months were tough to get through is an understatement. She missed my college graduation the following year. She missed my wedding the year after that. She won't be there when I have a baby.

It's been 5 1/2 years now and it's still just as hard as the day she died. People always tell you it gets easier in time but the truth is, you just become numb to it. I move on with my life because I have no other choice. I think about her every single day. I don't cry as often as I used to but I still have an occasional meltdown. Unfortunately, I have to hold myself together because my uncle is currently fighting lung cancer as well. Unlike my mom who smoked since she was a teenager, he never touched a cigarette in his life. I told you cancer doesn't care.

Tragically, there are many other stories like mine out there. If you're a parent who is a smoker please think about your kids. No one wants to lose a mom or dad ever let alone in their early 20's. I have been robbed of many years and memories I could have had with my mom. No words can explain what that really feels like. 

November 17th is the Great American Smokeout! Set a goal to quit for good!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Going it alone

Have you ever gone to a movie alone? I don’t think I could bring myself to do it. I would feel too pitiful buying one ticket and sitting unaccompanied in the dark. I know lots of people who have done this and say it’s really no big deal, but I just can’t do it. There have been many times that my husband and I don’t agree on what we want to see, but I would cave in and go to his choice of movie before I would go to separate movies.
We don’t go out to a movie very often for several reasons, but every once in a while you get the urge and go. There’s a theater by our house that’s relatively inexpensive so we go in the middle of the day to get the even cheaper price and less crowds. There’s nothing worse than people kicking your seat or talking through the whole thing. (Seriously, who raised you?)

There are several movies coming out soon that my husband has mentioned going to alone like 11-11-11, Immortals and The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn – Part 1. Oh wait, that last one was my little cousin. My bad. The point is, he wouldn’t even think twice about actually going by himself and enjoying it.  

If I wanted to see something that no one else wanted to go to, I would simply wait for it to come out on DVD and rent it. Or borrow it from my sister-in-law because she buys every movie ever made. Winning. I think if I ever did go to a movie alone, I would have to buy popcorn or something to keep myself occupied instead of looking around wondering how many people think I’m a loser for coming alone.

Do you go to movies alone?