Sunday, September 25, 2011

Whew finally bought in

While Facebook is a serious time waster, I agree, it does really have its usefulness. I set up my Facebook event page for the wedding today. Now, family don't be too offended if I left you off, since I am quite certain that mother or myself will personally email/call/text/generally pester for the necessary address. You know, you're family and all and can't get out of this.

I'm so relieved this whole mess is finally coming to an end. I have decided I really don't like having a year plus to plan because I rather lost my enthusiasm for the details six months ago but they're the only thing left to plan! AAAAHHHHHH! What are people's thoughts about mirrors and votive candles as centerpieces instead of flowers? It's kind of my leaning right now because I don't want to have to pick out arrangements and stuff.

Oh, if somehow you happen to be reading this blog, aren't family, and haven't gotten invited to the event or don't have Facebook, give us your address here

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Wedding plans

I'm pretty proud of my almost-completed newest creation.

Now I just have to do invitations and decide about centerpieces. HOORAY for almost being done with planning!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

FALL! Ouch.

Fall fell on us this week. It went from being in the comfortable 80s to the rather chilly 50s overnight. And I'm hardly even exaggerating. And we're not talking Utah 50s where it's 50 in the morning and 75 that afternoon, we're talking East Coast 50s here. Where you wake up and it's 52 and when I go home at night it's warmed up to a balmy 63. Needless to say, I'm really glad I got my heated throw in to work already. It's already been discovered by my coworkers and become a running joke as well. Ah the life of the cold people.

In some other exciting news, I cleaned out my personal email this week. I had the first half of the week that was pretty incredibly boring because the markets had fallen in switching from summer to winter grade gasoline which meant that VGO prices were too high relative to their value and that meant that my traders didn't buy anything and when there is no buying I have no work to do. So I was productive and weeded my personal inbox sorting all of the mail and deleting a good bit of it. I've gotten down from 3000+ to 4 emails in my main inbox. Which I'm pretty proud of. I've been meaning to do it for a really really long time. Except that I re-discovered my weekly emails that I wrote when I was in DC before and realized I have no excuse not to be a more consistent blogger since I managed to do it for seven months before. Guess I still need to work on that!

In other cool news we got our table today!! So now our furniture set is all complete. Totally mismatched, but hey. It's my first set of furniture and I think it's a little bit expected since 1/3 was inherited, 1/3 from Target, and the rest from Ikea and my couches from RC Willey. So not really any matchiness expected. Although it does sadden me a little that not even the stains come close to matching at all. But, I did get the table all put together, shown here:


It was a long hard process. Luckily only the very end of it required power tools so I was mostly free of stellaference.


Mostly not all. There's a big coupon event at Joann's this week so I should be able to go make stuff for seat cushions. Because let's face it

Hard wood chairs will never be comfy. But a couple inches of foam might help. And once I do that I'll pretty much be done with all interior decorating. At least until Dave moves in and decides where he wants to put up his pictures and such and if we need a new TV stand. 

The table's inaugural meal will have to be breakfast though, I didn't get all of the seats put on the chairs until after dinner today. But I'm excited for it! And with three weeks to spare before I have company. Whew. 

Stella's Corner: Stella has a real patience problem. When I don't respond quickly enough to her demands for a walk she gets rather upset. Exhibit A: 
She stomped my foot pretty bad this week because I was holding her up and letting another guy exit the apartment building before us. Note to self: Self preservation more important than courtesy. Or maybe next time I'll just have to be in real shoes instead of flip flops. That would always work :)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Bye Bye summer

So although the first day of fall isn't really until September 21 or 22 (I can't remember which this year), Virginia has decided that Labor Day coincides with the fall fashion season and has thus given us weather appropriate for wearing all that delightful fall fashion. The price being I'm freezing all the time. I used my heated throw at work today. Modern technology really is incredible. I was actually warm today wearing just my sweater (plus blanket) vs typical wear of an almost-winter-coat. Dave teases me rather mercilessly about being so freezing, but it's the way I was made I guess.

On a side note: This weekend is also supposed to be raining and cold. Sigh if Summer ever did go out with a bang it was this year. And here I thought I was escaping Utah's weather mood swings. I need to get some more pairs of long johns.

Stella's Corner: Neither Stella nor I particularly care for the rain. So all this rain is making her unhappy. Today it was probably raining harder than when Irene came through. I think we all agree that we should be able to bottle up all this rain and ship it to Texas where it would be useful. In extreme protest of the rain today Stella got so worked up she ran into and dented one of my walls. No worries, no dogs were harmed in the making of that memory, she turned around and looked at me like nothing happened. Silly girl. 

Sunday, August 28, 2011

too-rah loo-rah too-rah loo-rah lay

Come on Irene! Well the song is actually Come On Eileen, but it did come up both in the office and on the radio this week waiting for Hurricane Irene to make landfall in the nations capital. Needless to say, to me it was pretty disappointing. Then again, having grown up in the South where I'd heard stories of hurricanes and lived through at least one tropical storm that I remember. As far west as I live, she ended up being just a bunch of rain and a little wind. There were a couple branches down in my complex, but no trees that I saw, no serious property damage, no power loss, water loss, or gas loss. Not even any thunder and lightening. So, for me at least, I escaped the wrath of Irene pretty unscathed.

On the note of the other natural disaster that occurred in the area this week, it really couldn't have picked a lovelier day to happen at least. The weather was seriously perfect to have to stand outside for 45 minutes while they swept the building for damage. The earthquake itself shook for probably five seconds, although it felt more like fifteen. I haven't actually looked up the figure to know for certain. Probably half the people in the building wondered at least once if it was an explosion because they evacuated the building by turning on the fire alarm rather than announcing over a PA that there was an earthquake and we should evacuate. There are quite a few people in the building who were with Mobil in New York during 9/11. In any case it was sunny and warm instead of hot. I got home and the only casualty of the day was actually a bit of a surprise. My mom gave me a decoration of Peace on Earth for Christmas a few years ago, and when I arrived home it was broken on the floor. Any doubts that these are the Last Days?

Dave's Corner: Dave is doing well for the most part. The air conditioning comes and goes so he's had to deal with some pretty bad heat but he's coming down to only about a month left in Sangin. The most interesting story I've heard recently definitely was that he was searching an Afghani man when the man pulled a live bird out of his pocket. Dave admitted to being startled. I probably would have squeaked in surprise.

Stella's Corner: Stella has managed to break one leash by getting it stuck in the hood of a car while we walked. The leash had to be cut out to detach it from the car hood. She's well on the way to ruining her next one by chasing too many overenthusiastic squirrels who make me drop the leash so I don't get bowled over. I am seriously considering wrapping it in duck tape to preserve its live.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

The usual now seems weird

So when I lived in Utah, I would go home and visit probably every two weeks or so. I used to joke with everyone that going home wasn't a huge deal because I did it so often.

But now, it's been about a month and a half since I left Utah. And I'm going back tomorrow. And it seems weird that I'm going back. Is that weird or what? I didn't really think I would adjust to being gone that fast. Highly unexpected.

In other news, well there really isn't any. I shouldn't have been so proud about keeping up my running schedule, that has pretty much gone with the wind this week. I did do power yoga though. So my arms are pretty sore. Yeah, I thought yoga was about stretching not strength training too. Too bad I'm wrong. Or at least with the one power yoga video I have I'm wrong.

Oh! I got a calling too. I'm a home evening group leader again. I know, right? I was too eager to get out of it last time. Didn't learn the real purpose of being a home evening group leader so now I need a second go round. Opportunity, I'm thinking of it as an opportunity to make friends :)

Dave's Corner: I would tell you he's doing well, but I really don't know all that much. We haven't really been able to talk in almost a week. Just a couple texts here and there to let me know he's still busy and can't talk much. It's mostly because of the time zone i'm in though. If our time zones were more compatible those few texts would have probalby been full blown conversation.

Stella's Corner: Ok, Stella has some sort of aversion to the porch. At my house we joke about revolving door dogs, but that's really what she needs. Exhibit A:
Yes, that is her, standing in the doorway sniffing the outdoors while I sit outside on my lovely bench I assembled enjoying the perfect weather. But she won't come out with me. I even got her a cushion from a lawn chair so she could use it as a dog bed. Hasn't really worked so far. I guess she's concerned she'll get locked outside and left here? Who knows the thoughts of my adorable little dog.

Monday, June 20, 2011


So the cooking experiment has been a partial fail. The reason being: I don't eat enough. All the recipes I have that I really want to try feed eight plus people. So even cutting in half I still have enough for four meals. Meaning if I try and cook every day my fridge gets full to bursting and I can't find room or time for the leftovers. So, the cooking experiment is going to have to be cut down to only two or so days a week. I will say though, adding refried beans to my cheese quesadillas was a brilliant idea. Point for cookbooks!

But, on the other hand, my running experiment is progressing better than I had anticipated. Probably because I enlisted Carly to be my conscience. I'm trying to get up to the point where I can run a 5k without wanting to die afterwords. I don't know how successful I'll be with the not wanting to die part, but I have some hope for at least being able to complete a 5k. I'm getting my approximate training schedule from the It is really hard to run when it gets to about 9:30 PM and I still haven't made it out. Telling someone about your goals really does help you achieve them though. Or at least it has helped a lot so far.

Stella's Corner: On our run today (Stella decided she wanted to go for a long walk and I didn't want to go for a long walk plus a run, so the walk became the run) she spotted a doe and wanted to go chase it. Lucky for me, I caught her because that doe was having a serious struggle with fight vs flight. The reason?
She was protecting her little fawn. Seriously small. Like smaller than Stella. I honestly thought deer were born bigger than that, but I guess not. Definitely cool to see though.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

And I thought School was busy!

Well, it was. Generally much busier than I have been in the last two weeks. The problem lies in the fact that after a nice long day at work... I have nothing to write about!

Seriously, work doesn't generate that much cool blogging worthy content. I guess the call that I got at 2:30am this week. But no one really wants to hear about logistics. It's kind of the hidden world of behind-the-scenes-ness. Maybe that's why I like doing it so much. Because truly I enjoy it. Getting to be In Charge of where and when things happen and trying to make sure everyone else understands the Big Picture. But really not that much cool story worthy stuff. Which really only leaves the weekend to generate Hey Look at What I Did! type material. And last weekend was busy!

I joined the Mormon Choir of Washington when I got out here and had three rehearsals before our first concert. Lucky for me I learn music pretty quickly. It's easy when you're a soprano :) So last week we had two concerts, one on Saturday and one on Sunday. I will admit, humid hot is really hot when you're also trying to sing worth anything. The Saturday concert was outside and it was HOT!!!!!

Afterwords, I went to the Fairfax County Fair (Celebrate Fairfax!) with my aunt and uncle.
Steve won me this cute caterpillar because I started singing Tim McGraw at him (you guess which song!)
Cute huh?
We also heard The Bangles in concert (who are they right?). They were popular right around the time I was born... Although they said they're releasing another album this fall, so maybe I will learn who they are. As it was, I recognized Manic Monday and Walk Like an Egyptian. From commercials with those compilation of classical rock hits CD's. Yes indeed, I get out a lot ;)

The concert on Sunday kind of took up the whole afternoon. I understand why call time is an hour and forty five minutes before our performance, but it is still a lot of time to wait around. I'm glad that ward choir isn't that way though. I'm going to have a hard enough time being there at 7:30am next week!

We had another concert yesterday out in Winchester. Boy is the stretch of freeway running out there really pretty! Once you get out past Gainesville, it's pretty much all trees and farms and such. So even near the Nation's Capitol it doesn't take too long to find wilderness. Maybe just a little longer than when I lived in Utah.

Dave's Corner: As far as he'll tell me he's doing well. Busy with boring stuff. He teases me about being better at logistics than me since that's what he's doing too. Except I can actually tell people what to do and they'll listen to me. And he has to try and make people think he knows better than they do without making them angry enough to dismiss his idea without consideration. There are so many perks to being a civilian some times.

Stella's Corner: image.jpeg
Stella has a love hate relationship with the East Coast I think. She loves the squirrels
 image.jpeg (yes all of her paws are indeed off the ground as she tried to follow the squirrels into the tree) (I don't like the squirrels, she still tries to pull me off my feet to chase them down. Hasn't succeeded yet though)
but the hot does get a little much for her. She spends a lot of time laying on my tile floor trying to soak up the coolness. Next week I am going to try one of the no leash dog parks in the area. See if she is really as anti-social as I think she is.

well, ttfn! ta ta for now!

Sunday, June 5, 2011


So the pool opened last week, and I finally got a chance to go yesterday. It's actually a really nice pool. It is actually positioned so it's in the sunshine most of the day, which surprisingly enough seems to be an oddity in many apartment complexes. I LOVE SUNSHINE!!

It's been lovely and warm. I really do appreciate my desk too. It's right next to a huge bank of windows so I can look out and see all the trees surrounding the office.

ooh! and I got my library card :D I'm really excited about that. That's just about all that's been exciting in the last part of this week.

The cooking experiment is going well though. I've made stuffed pork chops, breakfast casserole, homemade meatballs, and an interesting salad dressing so far. On the table still are some biscuits and enchiladas. Hopefully I manage to keep it up :)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Sometimes work is Fun


Pretty cool huh? This was work today, watching the Washington Nationals vs Philadelphia Phillies. It was pretty cool. Well, I didn't pay much attention to much of it actually. ExxonMobil has a private suite where employees and other 3rd parties can watch, so I was eating food and talking to my coworkers. Really hot and humid outside, glad for the air conditioned box. Although, there is one thing for being really cold all the time, I didn't get nearly as hot as any of my coworkers.

my first attempt at being a chef! stuffed pork chops actually turned out pretty well. I need to get some casserole dishes though. Can't do everything in metal pans!
Stella's corner: She gets most excited when I get up in the morning and get home in the afternoon. It's really cute when she comes in the morning and paws at my bed to try and get me up faster. Better than any alarm clock!

Sunday, May 29, 2011


Yes indeed, my complex has an ice cream truck that drives around and plays music. How fun is that?? I just haven't gone out and actually gotten anything. Maybe tomorrow. 

Tomorrow which is Memorial Day and so I don't have work. Most popular question this week: Do you have plans for Memorial Day? Umm, no, I've only been here a week. But, in the spirit of Memorial Day here goes for remembering our troops
Everyone who follows this blog I'm sure knows that Dave is in the Marine Corps and is deployed in Afghanistan right now. For those who don't follow this blog, well now you know. Lucky for me as the fiancee left at home, he's had a pretty boring tour so far. Many thanks to him and to all of the troops serving now and who have served, especially those who make the ultimate sacrifice in defense of freedom and liberty.

It's rather interesting the sorts of questions you get as the one who is supporting a family member in the military. Of course it is hard being separated from the person you love. And knowing there is a slight chance that something could happen that he or she doesn't come home. But it's worth it. You learn to cherish the time you have together a lot more. But I don't know if being apart is really any harder than being together for some people. Love takes work, you know? Near or far. It's about choosing to be committed to another person through everything.

On a different note, I finished my first week at work. Looks like it should be a good time from what I can tell. They're going to try and have me flying solo on Tuesday. OOO scary! But, since everyone pretty much has said that if I have any questions I can ask them, I have a good number of people to question at every turn. 

Pretty building from the outside. Looks very much like an office building inside, but I don't know how they feel about me taking pictures inside, so I'm probably not going to try. 

Stella's been having a grand old time. She's discovered squirrels to the everlasting dismay of my shoulder. Don't let the innocent nose fool you!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Bob the Builder

My dad would clarify and say I didn't actually build any of this. It was all purchased from Target and all I had to do was assemble it. But, I scared my poor little dog with my electric drill, so I will tell you I built them.

two sets of knick knack shelves

book case 

bar stool

wire storage shelves
my poor baby Stella
no animals were harmed in the making of this picture. She was actually just about to go on a Walk...

I'll probably get more 'finished' pictures after I get my kitchen table. It is the last major item that I am still missing. But that won't be for a while because I am perfectly contented to use my lone bar stool. I am very proud of all my furniture though, it took me almost an entire day to buy it, bring it inside, and put it all together. Next up is drapes and mounting all my pictures on the wall.

oH the Places you'll gO

What would DC be without some site seeing???
James Madison's Montpelier  

Inside the Library of Congress 
I was really surprised, you have to 'be part of' a tour group to see any of the books! 

Capitol Dome! 
Our poor little interns didn't really know what they were doing on our inside the Capitol building tour. 

My wonderful mommy was so much fun to go around town with! It's a lot of walking and I'm pretty sure her shoes were still wet from all the rain we'd been having. Got to see the original Constitution and Declaration of Independence at the National Archives no photography allowed though
I'm going to have to think long and hard before I decide what I want to see the next time I head down town.

I'm home!

Well, as home as this will ever be until. Amazing how the word home can shift depending on the situation. When my dear mom was still out with me, Aunt Julie's house was 'home' even though we were only there for a few days during the transition!

SOOOO... Time to make up for all the lost blogging time from not having the Internet. my phone really likes to capitalize Internet because really and truly it is a proper noun. How funny. I can't decide if I should just do one MEGA post or if I should split it up. I think I will probably split it up since then it looks like I've actually blogged more than I have :)

So, to carry on my last post about windmills:

The last time I drove across the country I was obsessed with farm houses. Let's face it, they are pretty adorable if you drive by the right kinds. This time it was definitely windmills though. They are seriously impressive and there isn't anything more to it than that.

The drive actually wasn't too bad all told. We got some rain but it wasn't ever really bad, and it did get hot towards the end, but it wasn't too bad either. And we really only hit construction on our last day of driving. We did it in three days. My dad thought we were really slow, but there wasn't really any hurry to get here, I had no furniture! But oh how I dislike ORANGE!!

Sunday, May 15, 2011


It will probably take me a few days before I end up posting any pictures, but WE MADE IT!! Three days of cross country driving madness. We crossed Utah, Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia. Well, parts of them at least.

I discovered I have a weird fascination with wind mills. Well, maybe not that unexpected since they are a pretty cool feat of engineering. 

I have now checked in to my new apartment and I think it looks pretty swell for having no furniture :) Got to do a little bit of shopping too for all of the things that got left in Provo because they weren't mine. I'm really excited for all my stuff to get here so I can get started putting my life together in this new place. The apartment is a little corner apartment with a bit of a view across a courtyard and a bit of a parking lot. It is yet to be seen what the ambient noises will be since mom and I have been staying with my aunt and uncle since there is nothing to sleep on over there.

Church today was stake conference with my old stake. I love seeing people's faces when they go through the perfunctory 'hi' in response to you saying hi and then realize they know you and didn't expect to see you ever again. Happened twice today. 

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Beginning

I was sitting in my living room tonight and thinking about how I will keep in touch with everyone since I've graduated and will be moving away from home and family and pretty much most everything I know. There's always Facebook, but let's be honest, who actually posts things worth paying attention to on Facebook?

My sister claims if I start a blog I'll be one of THOSE people. I don't know what that means though. So, here I am, one of THOSE people. 

So, here are logged the voyages of the young adult Karen as she grows up. Well, maybe grows up :)