Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Memorial Day Weekend

I was lucky enough to spend my Memorial Day weekend visiting sunny, beautiful West Palm Beach, Florida with my family to celebrate my grandpa's 75th birthday!

We got to my grandparents' house pretty late on Friday night, but we managed to chat for a few minutes. I honestly can't remember the last time I saw them. I think it was Thanksgiving of 2009, but I'm not really sure. It was definitely good to see them and spend some time together!

On Saturday, we started the day off at the Henry Morrison Flagler museum and estate. Henry Flagler was a railroad tycoon and is credited with connecting Key West to the rest of Florida and the U.S. by rail. The mansion was exquisite and the views outside were just beautiful. I honestly can't begin to explain how much it thrills me to see palm trees in person!

We went to a fabulous outdoor mall after we left the museum where we just walked around and enjoyed the gorgeous weather. We even got my grandparents, who are strict ice cream-eaters, to try some of that fancy frozen yogurt where you add all of your own toppings and pay by the ounce. I'm happy to say it was a hit! Later that night, we went out for a nice dinner to celebrate my grandpa's birthday.

On Sunday, we all slept in late and didn't have a lot of time since we had to leave for the airport around 3, so we just walked around the mall and had a late lunch/early dinner. Then my family and I headed to the airport and made our way back to Dallas.

I had such a good weekend, and I'm looking forward to seeing my grandparents when they're here in December for my college graduation!

I also loved coming home on Sunday night knowing that I didn't have work the next day because of the holiday. I spent my day off getting a pedicure, getting my tires balanced and rotated (so exciting, I know), and going out for sushi with my parents. Overall, I'd say it was a pretty successful weekend!

After a short day at work today, I'm already on weekend mode again. I'm off to St. Louis bright and early tomorrow morning to stand next to one of my best friends as she gets married. I can't wait to see Boyfriend, my friends, and celebrate!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

On Repeat

"Never Gonna Leave This Bed"-Maroon 5

"The Lazy Song"-Bruno Mars: This video never ceases to make me smile.

"The Edge of Glory"-Lady Gaga: I love this song, including all of its circa-1980s saxophone glory at the end.

"Good Life"-One Republic

"F*** You"-Cee Lo Green (*unedited version*): This song comes on every time I'm in my car-seriously-and I'm not sick of it yet!

"Hello"-Martin Solveig and Dragonette

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Fish and chips, anyone?

Okay, all my well-traveled friends. I'm going to London with my family at the beginning of July, and I need suggestions! Tell me things I need to do, see, bring, eat, etc....and tell me things I shouldn't do, see, bring, eat, etc.

I want to know it all, and I'm asking for your help!

1, 2, 3, GO!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Brain Dump

I haven't posted anything about my life in a while, and I can't sleep, so here it goes.

  1. I was originally planning on taking a Maymester class, but my professor was totally inflexible and wouldn't allow me to miss one day of class due to travel plans, so I ended up having to drop the course. Because of this, I started working full time at my internship 3 weeks earlier than I was supposed to. I'm now a full-fledged, 40-hour-a-week employee! It's kind of kicking my butt at the moment, but I'm sure I'll get used to it pretty soon.
  2. My heart goes out to everyone in Joplin, Missouri. Although I can't think of anyone off the top of my head, after going to school in Missouri, I'm sure I know people who are from Joplin (or at least people who know people who are). I've heard that the amount of damage is unbelievable and that the town is basically leveled. Keep sending positive thoughts to Joplin. They really need it right now.
  3. I've been slacking on my mission to learn how to cook this summer. I seriously haven't made anything except a batch of brownies...which were delicious, or at least that's what my coworkers (and boss' family) told me. While I am determined to get in the kitchen and start cooking, I am pretty proud that the brownies were completely made from scratch! I'll post the recipe as soon as I can dig it out of one of my stepmom's 85 cookbooks.
  4. Take a look at this. I mean, really? Need I say more? Thanks for sending this my way, Boyfriend! Photobucket
  5. This time next week, I will have just gotten home from celebrating my grandpa's 75th birthday with my family in Florida. 2 weeks from now, I will be hanging out with Boyfriend and friends, and recovering from the wedding of one of my best friends. 3 weeks from now, I will be hanging out with my best friends HERE in Dallas (rather than in Missouri, like usual) after the wedding of a Phi Mu sister. 6 weeks from now, I will be in London.
  6. Now that I'm not in school and literally have nothing to do when I'm not working, I want to read...for fun...which is something I haven't done in years. If you have any suggestions for good books-funny, cheesy, sad, trashy, whatever-send them my way!
  7. I bought new sandals from Gap today! I needed some neutral strappy sandals that will be comfortable to wear while walking around in London, and I found them at Gap on sale for only $25. Score!
  8. I was the lucky winner of the Drugstore Makeup Giveaway Sara over at You, Me, and Anthropologie hosted! I'm so excited to get my goodies in the mail! Thanks, Sara!
That's all I can think of right now, and I really need to go to sleep, being that I need to wake up in about 4.5 hours. Lovely.

Goodnight, all!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

España, Part 4

España, Part 1
España, Part 2
España, Part 3

Going to Gibraltar was one of the things I was looking forward to the most while in Spain. On Wednesday, my family and I grabbed our passports and headed to Gibraltar, which was between half an hour and an hour away from our hotel in Estepona.

Everyone just kept describing Gibraltar as a city on a rock, so I really didn't know what to expect.

Going through customs to go from Spain to Gibraltar was the first big shock. I thought security would be pretty strict since the two countries are right next to each other, but the guard barely glanced at our passports and we drove right on through without a problem. I guess that's what happens when people have to go to work everyday in a different country than the one they live in.

Being an English major and somewhat England-obsessed, I was so excited to be in Gibraltar, which is a British overseas territory. The city was just what I pictured a small European city to look like: lots of scooters, dreary buildings, small streets, laundry hanging on clothing lines, and shops and restaurants lining the streets. I loved it! I loved everything about it...just another sign that I'm supposed to be in Europe. :]

One thing that we didn't quite get the memo on was the size of our car. While in Spain, it was clear to us that our normal American-sized car was a little out of place, but Gibraltar was a completely different story. The streets were tiny! We actually got stuck trying to go up a hill between buildings. And by stuck, I don't mean just-kind-of-stuck-but-still-maneuverable. We were stuck. With less than an inch of room on either side of the car, we had to rely on the kindness of a local to guide us back down the hill. It was so scary! I can't believe my dad managed to steer that big BMW boat without hitting the walls. It was ridiculous.

After we handled that little snafu, we did the traditional tourist activities, including the British siege tunnels, appropriately named after the Windsor royal family, the amazing caverns that were used as a hideout for troops during battles between the British and the Spanish, and an old Moorish castle or two.

One thing about Gibraltar definitely surprised me: the monkeys! There were monkeys everywhere, and these little guys were not afraid of people! They came right up to us, jumped all over our car, and just went about their business like nobody was around. One was even brave (and spunky) enough to try to steal my brother's camera!

After our tourist adventures, we walked around town, visited a lot of shops and boutiques, and had a traditional British meal of fish and chips. I loved Gibraltar, and I can't wait to visit the real London in just a few weeks!

I'm pretty sure that going to Gibraltar was my favorite day of our trip. It was just so fascinating to be able to drive across a gate and be in an entirely different country (where they speak an entirely different language, no less).

Next stop: Tangier, Morocco...seriously

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Second semester of junior year can be measured in...

  • 1 oral exam
  • 5 packets of poems/short stories/information/supplementary materials selected by teachers
  • 8 long papers
  • 9 Spanish debates
  • 9 tests
  • 10 labs
  • 13 short papers/compositions
  • 16 books/novels
  • 17 quizzes
I'm sure I'm forgetting something, but this past semester was the hardest to get through for some reason. I'm SO happy summer is finally here! Just 5 classes/15 credit hours and 7 months until I graduate. Bring it on!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

May Daybook

Outside my window... is a humid, rainy, overcast afternoon.

I am thinking... about the paper I need to write and the two tests I need to study for so I can officially be done with my junior year of college.

I am thankful for... opportunities. I have a lot going for me at the moment.

From the learning rooms... it's finals week: the most stressful, overwhelming time of the year. I can taste summer!

From the kitchen... is a delicious pizza waiting for me for dinner tonight.

I am wearing... black skinny jeans, black flats, a white/blue/black/purple ruffled collared shirt, and my white Stella Fossil watch.

I am creating... nothing. I'm too busy for anything extra right now.

I am going... to work in a little while.

I am reading... "The Rich Boy," a short story by F. Scott Fitzgerald. I'm comparing it to The Great Gatsby for my American Fiction paper.

I am hoping... that I manage to get SOME sleep this week!

I am hearing... students studying, chatting, and walking around the lounge I'm sitting in.

Around the house... is where I live these days. I moved out of my dorm and back home for the summer.

One of my favorite things... is blogging! I haven't had a chance to post in a little while, so I'm happy to be posting right now, even if it's quick.

A few plans for the rest of the week: work, homework, test, more homework, test, work, work, dinner with the coworkers, defensive driving, SLEEP

Here is picture for thought I am sharing... I'm in need of some of this. For real.

Click here to join in the Daybook fun!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Coming up!

1 week from now... I'll be done with my junior year of college.

3 weeks from now... I'll be in Florida celebrating my grandpa's 75th birthday with my family.

4 weeks from now... I'll be done with my summer class, soaking up every minute with Boyfriend, and standing next to one of my best friends as she marries her man.

5 weeks from now... I'll be reunited with my best friends and celebrating the marriage of a Phi Mu sister.

9 weeks from now... I'll be in London.

Lots to look forward to, and I hope time keeps right on barreling on.

Monday, May 2, 2011

There's a lot I want to say...

There's a lot I want to say about the way the general American public has reacted to the death of Osama bin Laden, but I think Gwen over at Everything I Like Causes Cancer said it best.

"The world breathes a sigh of relief that the foremost terrorist leader has been eliminated, and rightly so, but let's not lose sight of temperance and grace. This is far from over, and the actions we take and the words we speak today will color what happens in the future."

The eyes of the entire world are on us right now, and the celebrations/riots in the streets last night were disgraceful. No, I'm not going to mourn the loss of this horrible human being, and, yes, the world is a much better place now that he is gone, but openly celebrating a death doesn't make us any better than the people who we saw halfway across the world celebrating the deaths of countless innocent Americans.

My exact thoughts and feelings can be summed up in this article.

Let us use this time to reflect on the innocent people who have lost their lives at the hands of terrorists and in pursuit of our freedom. Let us band together and remember the morals and values our great country was founded on, not fall to the inhumane practices of our enemies.

God bless America.
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