28 January, 2010

Happiness 101 Award

My friend M, over at What Today Looks Like, nominated me for the Happiness 101 award! Which probably couldn't have come at a better time, as I needed the smack upside the head to remind myself that despite everything that's happened over the course of the last few months, my life is actually pretty kick-ass (thanks, M!). So here we go: the award is pretty easy ... I need to name 10 things that make me happy (Imagine if it had been 101 things?!?! Now that would have been challenging!).

1. My Friends. Okay, yes, I say this all the time on this blog (if you're getting a broken record vibe, skip to #3), but I really do have the best friends in the world. They've really been here for me when I've needed them lately, and they're all pretty much rockstars.

2. My Family. It's hit home for me that I can tend to take them for granted. Assume they'll always be here. But I'm trying not to do that anymore. And to relish in the happy things. Like the memories of a dog with braces, or the look on the faces of my little cousins when they opened their Christmas presents. Or the image of Dad making chili for the cook-off wearing a madras jacket. Yup, definitely make me happy.

3. TV. I wasn't allowed to watch much as a kid, and that sort of backfired on Mom, because I'm obsessed with it now. I own way more TV shows on DVD than is probably healthy, and tuning into a new episode of one of my favorites is like having old friends stop by for a visit: it makes me smile.

4. My Kindle! Who knew I'd love it as much as I do? And my aching back thanks the Kindle for lightening the load of my carry-on during my many, many travels.

5. Snow. I love winter!! And I miss it here. I'm sure when I move back up North, it'll get real old real quick, but now the thought of snow makes me sigh in longing, and wish it was cold enough to curl up with a cup of hot coca and a book, in front of the fire.

6. Pentwater. Every spring, there comes a day when I walk outside and think to myself: "It smells like Pentwater!" I have no idea what that smell is, but if I could bottle it, I'd be rich! And happy all the time!!

7. Getting mail. Yup, I'm stealing this one from M. My friend S sent me a card in the mail the other day, just because -- how cool is that?? And when my pseudo-little brother was at Basic, writing me letters, it made me grin just to see the envelope in the mailbox every week. There's something magical about getting a piece of mail that isn't a bill, or junk! I wish we wrote more letters today.

8. Gizmos. Apple announced the iPad this week, and I think I'm in love. I'm a nut for all things techie. I love new gadgets and gizmos. I've got a Kindle, more than one TiVo, multiple iPods, and an iMac. And I still have a TI-83 graphing calculator. Beat that for tech geek coolness! And the iPad seems to be the perfect solution for a girl who's been wanting a laptop for the portable internet/typing factors, but who's not willing to lug a big heavy thing around all the time, and isn't willing to give up her much beloved desktop for primary computing. Like the Kindle before it, I imagine this bad boy will rock my world. In approximately 4 months.

9. Shopping. It shouldn't make me happy. In a perfect world, spending money would make me sad, and I would thus be loathe to do it. But it doesn't. Shopping, buying new clothes, gadgets (see #8, above), books, jewelry and furniture makes me deliriously happy. I'm going to have to see if I can give this whole "moderation" thing a try one of these days.

10. Sunsets. Wherever you are in the world, a sunset is a sunset. Each one is different, but no less beautiful. My favorites are in Pentwater, naturally, but I always make it a goal, wherever I am in the world, to see a sunset. Because it always makes me stop and sigh with happiness. Good job God...that's some excellent work, kudos!

So that's my 10! Now I have to pass it on. And since M's already done it, I can't choose her. Hmmm...decisions, decisions....

A, from Daydream Believer (who hasn't updated in forever, but who's top 10 list I would be very interested to see!)
Pam, over at Pam's Perspective (seems like a natural progression from Thankful Thursdays!)
Angie, at Shallow Thoughts (fmrly A Book A Day -- best new blog title EVER!)

16 January, 2010


So in walking to get my morning pick-me-up, in the form of a Starbucks Mocha, I walked past a beauty salon. Now that the weather down here has warmed up, all the local businesses have thrown open their doors to let the sunshine and warmth in. It's actually kind of lovely, and makes me happy I live in South Florida, where you can do that sort of thing in mid-January. But that's not the point of this story. The point is, this was a nice salon. Not super-swanky (it's in a strip mall after all), but several steps above a Hair Cuttery. It's a little family-owned place, and every time I walk by, the owner's dog is there, and people are laughing and chatting away. But this time, when I walked by, I saw all the stylists standing in a corner and chatting, and the customers all drying their own hair.

Now honestly, I don't consider myself to be a priss, but what kind of salon makes you dry your own hair? And really, why on earth would you pay for that???


In other news, I've finally gone and done it. I've ordered a new kitchen table. I've needed to do it for YEARS (after all, my kitchen table and chairs are older than I am!), but I haven't done it yet, in part because I remember sanding down and staining this kitchen table and chairs with my mom when I was a kid. I took it with me to college, and then to my first post-college apartment, and now here to Florida. And I hate getting rid of items like that, things with memories tied to them. But the table and chairs a rickety now, and even my parents, who both hate getting rid of sentimental items (gee, wonder where I get that from), agreed that it was time. So since the experts say that January is the time to buy new furniture, I was on the hunt. And I found this:

From Pottery Barn, the Shayne Kitchen Table. It's perfect for a small apartment, as it has leaves that fold down, and extra storage underneath. It was on a pretty nice sale, and I've run my hands over it in the Pottery Barn store plenty of times. I'm soooo excited.

I haven't purchased chairs yet though. Nothing I loved was on a sale good enough to merit an immediate purchase, and since I bought the table with my PB Credit Card, I'll get a rewards certificate that I can put towards the purchase of the chairs at some point in the future. I actually kind of like the http://www.potterybarn.com/products/napa-chair-slipcovers/?pkey=cchairs, in part because I could change up the slipcovers whenever I wanted a change in the room.

But I didn't really like any of the slipcovers they had available, and I'm thinking now that I might wait to see what they have in the spring. Of course, the Napa chairs are on sale right now....hmmm....what to do??

There's also the option of the Isabella Chair (in mahogany, to match the table).

It's cheaper (also on sale), and I like the lines, but I'm not terribly fond of the wicker seats. Though of course I could get the PB Chair cushions, which would be more comfortable, and i could switch up seasonally. I'm just not sure that I LOVE them. Anyone have any thoughts??

10 January, 2010

I'm crying over spilled milk...

...but I think it's okay, since it's milk that spilled in the trunk of my car. And no, it didn't just get all over the carpet/lining of my trunk, it got EVERYWHERE. Including, but not limited to: inside the spare tire wheel-well.

Yes, that's right, there was at least half a gallon of milk in the wheel-well where my spare tire is housed. Now you wouldn't think that'd be such a big deal. After all, it's all metal down there, and so you'd think it would be easier to clean up. You'd think that, but you'd be wrong. The problem comes from the fact that I COULDN'T REMOVE THE SPARE TIRE. There was some weird, giant screw thing holding it in place. Of course it didn't have a head that would fit the giant flat-head screwdriver that comes with my tire iron. Nooooo...no, it had a weird lever/handle thing that was next to impossible to budge. I gave it the old college try though, including hitting it with a hammer (yeah, I'm that girl), and after TWENTY MINUTES, it finally moved. Even then, I still tore up my fingers trying to turn it the rest of the way. Awesome. And also, ouch.

The only good discovery of the evening is that the carpet/lining of my trunk is removable, which means that I was able to cover the thing in resolve, and then bring it up to my apartment, where it will live in the guest bathroom during the day, and outside at night, so that it can actually air out, instead of stinking up my car for the next several days.

This whole process? Yeah, took a grand total of OVER AN HOUR. So I'm feeling okay about the fact that I have the urge to actually cry, over spilled milk. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to watch the season premier of Chuck, on NBC, while eating tacos. I believe I've earned it.

03 January, 2010

Happy New Year Everyone!

Well it's officially 2010! And for the record, I'm fine with "Two Thousand Ten" or "Twenty Ten" or '10. But the people calling it '010, or "Twenty-Dime"... yeah, I'm not okay with that. At all.

On a completely unrelated note, here's C's Tip for Teen Drivers: Don't overreact. It's possible that the person you think is mocking you in the other car, is actually just talking to a friend on speaker phone. If you start flipping the hell out, getting out of your car, and screaming at the other driver for mocking you, it's very possible that all that's going to happen is that the other driver will laugh at you. Oh, and if the other driver happens to be an off-duty cop, it's also possible that you'll wind up with a bright and shiny ticket out of the whole thing. And not the golden kind that will get you a tour of Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory. Oh, and by the way, I'm the girl who'll actually be laughing and mocking you while all this goes down. Have Happy New Year Kiddo!