Friday, August 29, 2014


Time for a new phase.

That is how I view this huge change: as a life phase.  Most people who work full-time spend more time at work than at home with their families.  In my mind, this kind of time commitment makes your "job" a huge part of life in general.  Even with a proper work/life balance a job is where a ton of social interaction and intellectual stimulation comes from.  So with a new job comes a new way that I'll be spending a lot of time and energy.

And what a lovely way to transition, eh?  I am quite happy with how this has all worked out.  I know I talked a bit about about letting go of control and letting everything out itself out.  And so far so good!  The transition out of my old job has gone very smoothly and I have had a great last few weeks at work.  Everyone has been super kind and I will honestly miss the space and people a lot.  It is so hard to believe that my time at the gallery is over.  But I am ready for the new stuff, too. 

What better way to ring in a new phase than sweating it out in the Florida sun?  Last night we left the lovely, temperate weather of Asheville for the 90+ degree weather in Southern Florida.  Heather lived all over while growing up, but Florida is her home.  I can't tell you how many times she looks at me and says "I need the water."  She is worried about the fact that NO ONE who is supposed to actually like Florida is supposed to go in August.  Apparently it is the hottest month, and I am a menopausal lady.

But not to worry, I plan to spend whatever time is left between eating frozen sweet things and card playing fully immersed in water.  Floating in salty water sounds like a pretty heavenly way to spend some days.  The goal here is not to need a vacation from our vacation!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Endurance is not my Strength

Although I ran Cross Country in both middle and high school, I hated it.  I played lacrosse in high school too and used cross country as a way to not be a complete slob in the fall.  I had zero hand-eye coordination but I could run realllll fast down the field and chuck the ball in the net.  This was my one and only LAX skill and it served me very well.

This fear of endurance sports is a problem because I love to hike.  I have lots of short, steep uphill hikes that I like, which a friend of mine calls "butt hills," that have the reward of awesome views at the top.  There are tons of these quickie hikes around Asheville, but they are also busy, popular hikes.  Especially on the weekends, when we do most of our wilderness adventuring.

During my short stint in Tucson I went on some longer hikes and learned some valuable facts about myself:
 I am very annoying and uncoordinated when I'm tired.  

While hiking Seven Falls, having a bit of a fit/tantrum, I almost convinced my hiking partner to turn around before the falls.  Thank goodness we didn't.  Seven Falls is probably the most rewarding Oasis-in-the-dessert moment of my hiking experience.  On New Years Day 2012, also in Tucson, at the end of 5+ mile hike, I was so close to the end of the hike that the car was in view.  On the path to the parking lot I fell with my right shin underneath me, square on a rock.  That was extremely painful, not to mention awkward since I had my own leg pinned underneath me.  This particular laziness-induced-clumsy moment left me with a massive cut/bruise combo that lasted for months.  I still have a red splotch there.  Memories.  
When I am tired I don't pay attention to where my feet go and I fall.  
Right at the end of a hike.  
All the time. 

The approach to Seven Falls in the background

Seven Falls! 

Last Sunday Heather convinced me to hike 7 miles.  I was tired and not in the mood, but I knew that some nature would make me feel good.  Of course we got a bit lost on the way there, neither myself or Heather has one directional bone between us.  We are a hot mess.  It's a tiny miracle that we did the whole 7.4 miles, missed the impending rain storm AND didn't get caught in the woods after dark.  Boom shaka laka.  My dogs were BARKING at the end of this hike.  I do suffer from some plantar fasciitis (I am a grandma) so I have a tiny excuse, but really I am just a baby.  A baby-gma.  That makes sense.

This hike was so cool.  It was basically an out-and-back the paralleled the French Broad River in Marshall, NC and dead-ended at some railroad tracks.  It was so cool to see how the river bank and vegetation changed as we moved down the river.  At some points there would be a sheer cliff down to the river, and at others there was a nice low mossy bank you could step right off of into the river.  My camera battery sadly died, so I didn't get a good photo but there were also some amazing swimming holes along the way.  I want to go back prepared to swim!  We considered jumping in but sitting in my wet underwear for the 30 minute drive home was very unappealing.

Family photo!

We had the pleasure of bringing our friends' boston terrier, Luna, with us too.  Hiking with one dog always adds another level of complicated.  BUT Luna was such a dream to hike with, it makes me realize what a puppy Mozey still is.

Look at those tired dogs!  I am grateful that I pushed through my personal struggles to finish this awesome hike.  Seven miles is a huge accomplishment for me.  Maybe it will even happen again sometime?!

Friday, August 22, 2014


1. One more week at my job!

I am a big proponent of change, but it sure will be strange not to be at the same place anymore.  I am grateful for the time and experience here and I'm interested to see how the future unfolds.

2. This time next week I'll be on the beach....have I mentioned how insanely excited I am?

3. Mozey ate my lovely orthotic sandals... yes I am a grandma.
The one's she ate are these, and the only shoes I have worn in the past year that don't cause me foot pain.  I have on "regular" (Zara brand) sandals today and my feets already be hurtin.
BUT I just found some orthotic sandals online for 30 bucks!  I hate how the shoes I have to wear for my bad feet are always expensive.  Here's hoping these work out.

4.  We made the Oh She Glows tomato sauce (from her new, gorgeous cookbook) with tomatoes and basil from the garden and ate it over zucchini noodles this week.  There is something so rewarding about eating food we have grown ourselves.  Super delicious!

5. Lastly, Mozey got really sick last night :(  It was the first inexplicable health issue she has had since we got her.  She had fleas and worms and all that good stuff when she was first adopted, but those were easy to figure out.  Last night she wouldn't eat, vomited a few times and was so lethargic.  I was up late last night worrying that there was some freak problem and she needed to go to the vet.  Luckily, Heather is rational and kept telling me that I would be tired and not want to eat if my stomach hurt too!  This morning was back to normal, thank goodness!

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Tuesday, August 19, 2014


I finally bought my plane ticket for Florida!  This Florida trip has been causing me a bit of stress because I was in the process of getting a new job when the idea of this trip became a reality.  I absolutely hate logistics and I hate pushing things to go my way so I just kept hoping it would all work out.  Heather's family initiated this trip so she purchased her ticket a while ago.  It wasn't until about a week ago that I was sure I could go!

I am so utterly excited for this trip.  
I knew that I could go to the beach if I didn't get a new job... so I was okay with that.  But the whole reason I was searching for a new way to spend 9-5 was because I was craving a change.  I also knew that getting that change could mean giving up my vacation.  And I was going to have to be okay with that.

A few weeks ago I got a job offer.  I was flattered but it wasn't exactly the job that was going to make it worth it for me to leave my current job and miss 10 days of total relaxation.  So I took a chance and declined the offer.  

This is faith, y'all.  Pure, blind faith.  

I was literally asking everyone I knew to send their fairy sparkles into the universe on my behalf.  The issue wasn't so much being unhappy where I have been, it was more feeling that this new position was so right.  I put my all into an opportunity that literally makes my skin crawl in excitement.  Reading the job description for this position was like reading a list of my personal interests.  I worked really hard and... I got it.  I got the job I wanted.   AND I get to go relax at the beach.  I cannot tell you how much I prayed for this to happen.
I feel like I won the lottery!

We fly to FL the last day I work at the gallery and fly home the day before I start my new job!  I hope this doesn't exactly feel like the whirlwind I am imagining it to be.

I will reflect more on what my job has been like for the last 2+ years (in general, pretty great!) and hopefully be able to share some soon about my future position!  I am super excited (can I possibly use this word enough?) about it but I don't feel like I should write too much about something without actually experiencing it yet.   I hope that makes sense. 

Friday, August 15, 2014


Happy Friday party people!

1. I accidentally spent all day drinking mimosas on Sunday and I didn't hate it.  I am not normally one for "day drinking" as the college kiddos say, but this was technically after 12pm so..that's cool right?  What I learned from this well-spent afternoon is that I want to be Morticia for Halloween and I suck at ping pong.  

2. The weather!  Come on Asheville, it's August!  I want to walk out of my overly air conditioned work space and sweat!  Seriously that is my goal.  I want to go from sore throat causing frigidity to hot, sticky heat in the snap of my fingers.  I have finally adjusted to the heat of the South and now we are having Maine weather.  All that work for nothing.

3. Lipstick.
Can't stop won't stop.  
I have decided that wearing too much crazy bright lipstick will distract people from realizing I have not made any other efforts when it comes to my appearance.  It is also the easiest makeup item to apply so it makes me feel like I tried when really, I moved my wrist back and forth a few times.  I call that a win.
This, this and this have been favorites.

4. Asheville has a Hoop Jam every Tuesday night in the summer in the park near my place of employment.  On these evenings I tend to wander towards the alluring bongo drums and sparkly hoops to watch them go.  Seriously, those people are talented.  And this week I saw this guy:

He is parked in the center just watching.  You go, Glen Coco.

5. This picture of Mozey.  Tiny dog, huge stick.  She's got confidence, that one.

How was your week?

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Friday, August 8, 2014

Measuring Time

What the fudge knuckle.

Yep, fudge knuckle.

{{Side note: In real life, I swear a lot.  Give me one glass one wine and hide your kids.  BUT, I have been told by multiple people that I should not swear (that means cussing for all you Southerners) in my writing as it degrades the quality.  And oddly enough I agree.  I love me some dirty mouthed broads though, so go see MODG and MFAMB for your f-word quota.}}

Anyway, what the fudge knuckle?

That is how I feel about September being quick on our heels.  Fall is my favorite season, hands down, but where did summer go?  Lately, the temperature has been cooler, I smell my neighbors' fires at night and it makes me ache for more sun!  I am aware that as one ages, reflections on the eternal quickening of the passage of time become part of the dialogue.  "Ohmygod, how is it Christmas already?  When did that child get so big?"  and so on.  I do not want to be that grandma.

But for real...the pace of this summer has been a sprint.  I brought some extra wine (yes, there is such a thing) over to my neighbor's house last night and we had that whole "whats-going-with-you-these-days" chat.  When I told her all that has been going on she kinda stared at me and gave me that face and said WOW that's a lot.  I am beyond grateful for all our family and friends and the festivities we get to take part in.  I actually feel like I don't get enough time with many of the people I love who live in my city.  But with all that has been going on in our lives, dealing with house drama and investigating lots of future plans and ideas, along with the travel that comes with family and wedding season, I feel like I just want to BE.  I want to sit on my porch with my dog and a beer and read a book.  I want to sit and watch the fireflies winking and swat at mosquitos and stare at the bus that is parked directly across from our house.  I have grown to love that bus; it is a total mystery to me and I love it that way.

I am making it a personal goal to slow down more and enjoy what is left of summer.  I hate to say it but I often yearn for more time.   In my opinion, time is all we really have, it is the most valuable resource.

So here is to less sprinting and more breathing, at least for now!

Friday, August 1, 2014

High Five for Friday!

It has been an amazing and BUSY week! Let's go!

1.  This is a scheduled post as I am en route to Baltimore to be a bridesmaid in my friend Abbey's wedding.  My BFF 4 Eva since middle school.  Most of our years as friends pre-college consisted of playing her brother's video games and Wal-Mart tag.  Sad but true, yay for central PA!

2. Another one of my oldest friends made a pit stop in Asheville this week on her cross country journey.  Carly and her husband Sean are moving to LA from NC and I am so excited for them!  I am so glad I got to hang out with them one last time before they move to the West Coast.  And their dog Hope and Mozey loved each other, it was super adorable.

3. This is my current situation as I type this post.  It's not easy to hold a baby and a dog while typing, but it's well worth it.  My niece is the cutest thing on the planet.
I am not biased either, this is a real, hard fact.
Look it up.

4. We finally carved out a little time for a hike this week.  It was so gorgeous and just what I needed: exercise + family time + nature = perfection.

5. I commuted to work this week from Montreat as my family is currently on vacation there!  Montreat really lends itself to book reading and coffee drinking.  That and a porch is, in my opinion, an unbeatable combination.

Hope y'all had a wonderful week!

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