Monday, January 31, 2011

Hunker Down: Plan It Out

2011 is going to be a big year. It is a year that requires a lot of planning with big payoffs at the end. We are getting married. We are moving. We are going back to Australia.

My friend Sam is also planning for a big year so we keep each other in check. We are helping one another remember our goals, the things we want to save for, the big picture. If I pick up a shirt in Target, she says Australia and I walk away. It makes it so much easier when the ones around you are on board with your plans.

Hunker Down January: I did not want to write about this until it was over. It is what Sam and I called this past month. Our goal was to spend less money and work out more.

December always leaves me feeling drained. It gets so expensive between buying gifts and plane rides home and it gets unhealthy with all of the busyness and holiday parties.

We started 2011 with a reset button.

I am pretty happy with how we did. My spending on restaurants, fast food, and shopping went down significantly. We also have been going to the gym regularly and I am starting to see results. I have lost a few pounds but more importantly, I can run longer and stretch further. Getting my feet flat to the ground during downward dog is no longer a challenge. (Did you hear that Erica??) It is the personal victories and an encouraging buddy that keep me going back.

Now that we have balanced ourselves out with a month of cutting back, we are moving into Plan It Out February. We can maintain our controlled spending and regular exercise but with birthday extravaganza approaching, we need to anticipate going out three weeks in a row! Ohh February is going to fly by (I hope)!

It is the time of year that I start itching for warm weather. Oh how I miss flip flops and tank tops.

Here's to Plan It Out February... Wish us luck!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Twenty Seven: Reviewed

Although my birthday is not here yet, it is not far away. I know that because when I walk into Target, Valentine's cards and decorations are capping the aisles and Conversation Hearts are easily found. My birthday is on Valentine's Day so the pink and red of the season feels like a reminder of age more so than love.

The 27th year in trips:
  • February:  San Francisco to see Kris. Napa with Kris, the night she told me I was going to Vegas, driving in her suv dancing to the radio.
  • April: Vegas for Kris's bachelorette party! VIP in Vegas, TAO, Bellagio brunch, Theresa's magic tricks, winning at blackjack
  • May: Caron wedding in Madison. Home to Boston for the Rice wedding (groomswoman) and to Rhode Island for the Caisse wedding (bridesmaid)
  • June: Cincinatti for the Zitelli wedding (bridesmaid). I didn't know it then but Nick asked my parents permission. Gong reunion.
  • July: Engagement! Rhode trip to Illinois for a new car. Vacations to the cabin.
  • August: Home to Boston to find a wedding venue and fall in love with the Omni Parker House.
  • October: My parents and Tracy come to visit, Nick and I get engagement photos taken, and I buy my wedding dress. Sam and I roadtrip for the second time to Finley, North Dakota. We drive out to a wind farm (which is way cooler than it sounds)
  • December: Christmas in Boston and skiing in New Hampshire.
Plans for 28: Boston. New Hampshire. Missouri. South Dakota. Australia!!!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Simple Words: Still Hold True

I keep seeing these signs around and I love them. I want to get one for myself to hang up at the office and sometimes I wish I could send them to the ones that I am talking to on the phone. Anonymously just mail a little note that says: Read this and breathe deep. You will be okay.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Simple Dream Home: NOT a Design Blog

In contrast to the above picture, it is so cold here today! I stepped out of the house with plans to ride the bus but my leggings argued for the corolla and won.

To distract myself for the -35 that they are projecting for later tonight, I found pictures of homes that are beautiful, that feel warm, that are not in the upper Midwest.

They are the kinds of homes that I would like to find myself living in. Some of the pictures I have viewed on other blogs a long time ago and fell so in love, that I continue to go back and drool over the warm, simple life that I imagine the space would provide.

This kitchen is simple. Classic with a modern twist. Elegant yet comfortable. Love.

So calming. It would be such an escape to collapse into this bed. I want to nap there right now.
I adore this set up and I'm in love with the light fixture. It just looks so cozy.

Love love love this library. Classy and eclectic. Funky with timeless pieces.

Cutest little girl room I have ever seen. I actually saved this picture twice on two different locations from two different places. I am consistent in my taste.

Oprah's library. Enough said.

Oprah's library part II. I want to curl in in that chair and read/nap by the fire OR have a glass of wine with Oprah.

Oprah library part III. Love this room.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Escape: Here but not Here

Today I'm feeling kind of dreamy. I do not feel like working. I want to get lost inside photos and words. I want to cuddle in bed and finish reading this book.
 I want to dress as if I'm going somewhere fancy with my love and then just pull down the shades and dance in my livingroom. 
I want to plan a trip somewhere tropical where the sun drips out of the sky and I move slowly through my day absorbing every fragment of warmth and light. I want to lay on the beach, dig my hands in the sand and listen to waves chasing each other to shore.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Blog Share: 1,001 Rules For My Unborn Son

Have you seen this blog yet?? If you have even just one minute, you should check it out. There is a book now too. I saw it at Urban Outfitters. It is such a simple idea and they are such simple rules but reading it somehow makes me feel hopeful. Some of my favorites:

474. If you choose not to own a TV, keep it to yourself.

473. You can’t drink champagne from the bottle. But you can try.

461. In battle, all cover is temporary. Keep moving.

451. You only get one chance to notice her new haircut.

402. If you aren’t hungry enough to eat an apple, you aren’t hungry.

76. Memorize the Bill of Rights and your favorite poem.

70. On a city sidewalk, walk briskly and don’t impede pedestrian traffic.
If you have to stop, move to the side.

66. Attend lots of weddings. Your friends will be there and the food is always good.

65. Read the good majority of a newspaper every day.

53. Offer your seat to a woman, no matter how old she is.

If you get to thinking you are a person of some influence,
try ordering somebody else’s dog around.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Breathe Deep: Set Goals

Boston from the airport window as we were leaving. Miss you already.
The holidays are so busy. It leaves me feeling almost breathless and this year left me literally with out a voice. I will write more about that later but for now, these thoughts are pushing to the front of my brain.

I have been making a lot of ToDo lists lately, except these ones are much bigger than laundry and groceries, and I have only been creating them in my mind. It is time to list out what I've been thinking.

Inspired by a new year, a pending birthday, a pending marriage, and a recent surge in friends who have done the same, I have been thinking a lot about goals. What do I want?

I am a great dreamer. I am not a great planner.

This is a living list. I will add, subtract, and cross off as appropriate because nobody can truly plan out their life and nobody knows what tomorrow will bring.

I'm very proud of our $12 fatty Christmas Tree this year

Goals for the Next 6 Months:
  • Simplify belongings by donating and selling items that are no longer in use
  • Save money according to my Mint goal plan
  • Pay off my credit card
  • Sell my car (Pay off my car)
  • Begin planning for Australia
  • Establish and maintain consistent exercise
  • Drop back into the 20's
  • Everything wedding (too much to name)
  • Find a new home and plan the move
  • Enjoy the planning process and our time being engaged.
  • Return to writing on a regular basis
  • See my friends (you know who you are) 
  • Take more pictures
I love that I can be a total goof with him and gosh he's so cute!

Goals for the next 2 years and 2 months
(aka by the big 3-0):
  • Travel to at least one new country
  • Travel to at least five new states
  • Return to Australia
  • Visit Great Ocean Road
  • Attempt snowboarding
  • Marry Nicholas
  • Have a family plan
  • Have a house plan
  • Make the big move
  • Run a half marathon
  • Attempt to write a book... just try

My Adorable niece Kaia opening a gift I gave her on Christmas morning.

    Kaia just being as sweet as can be!