Friday, October 29, 2010

Things I'm Loving

Do you ever just have so many things you completely, 100% enjoy every time you use or notice them? Do you have things that you would buy again and again? Or things you can't believe you didn't have before?

I do.
1. I can't believe we went so long without some of these bad boys. No, that doesn't mean we've been stinky forever. But with cooler weather coming and now that we have our pup, things were starting to get a little... musty, for lack of better words. I've always had candles and Febreze to use when needed but now that we have two of these plugged in, I'm never going back. I can't wait to change from the Simply Fresh/Sunny Days scents we have right now to some festive Christmas scents soon.

2. If you've been reading my blog for any amount of time you might have figured out that I may or may not have a case of OCD. Okay so maybe not OCD but severe it-must-be-a-certain-way organization/life habits. Oh wait, that is OCD? Well then I digress. Having pretty highlighters in a range of colors helps Ochem studying to be as horrible as it otherwise might be. I'll never give these up.

3. This is the first thing I made on my Brother's Sewing machine and I'm very happy with it. So what if it's a little crooked, who would ever notice. It's sorta hard to tell but the fabric is crinkly and a perfect cream color. I had some extra fabric so I embellished it a little bit and made it a bigger friend-pillow to match. I love them both.

4. I wish I could say that I spend a ton of money on beauty related products and have all sorts of different things. But I don't. I try to use up what I have completely before I buy something else. That's what happened with my lotions. I wandered into Bath and Body Works a while back and this scent, White Citrus, was on clearance (for some odd reason because I went back and it wasn't again) and I absolutely adore the freshness of this lotion. I'm not a fan of making people cough when I walk by because I smell so strongly of something and this definitely does the trick for me. Just enough but not too much.

5. This Neutrogena face wash bar is one thing I'll always replace. I've been fortunate enough to have pretty easy, low maintenance skin for most of my life. Not too oily, not too dry, not prone to break outs or blemishes.... basically I am very, very thankful. I admit that I don't always wash my face before bed (shame on me) but this bar is the perfect morning wash. It doesn't have a real strong, pleasant smell but it really doesn't smell like much. I love that it's in bar form too because I can use as little or as much as I please, in the shower or in the skin, and it's easy for on the go/travel.

6. My guiltiest pleasure is definitely dessert. Give me something sweet, chocolatey, topped with sugar or a little fresh fruit, warm from the oven or frozen from the freezer and I'm a happy girl. Again, I am very thankful for my metabolism (and I'll be very sad when it slows down) but even now, these Skinny Cow ice cream sandwiches are good for my sweet tooth and for my mid-section. If you haven't heard of Skinny Cow please venture down your dessert isle at the grocery store and check them out. These come with chocolate or vanilla ice cream in the middle and can you believe it, one is only 140 calories. That's less than both Good Humor and Blue Bunny's products. I'll definitely be getting these again.




Thursday, October 28, 2010

Fall[in] for You

I know it might be a little late considering it's already almost Halloween (and you know I'll change to winter decor December 1st) but I thought I'd finally do a post about our fall decor in our apartment. I am still so excited that we have the space/effort to decorate this year because I love seasonal touches.

First up is the odd little shelf we have right inside our door and next to our bedroom. I put most of the stuff here, like the pictures and wine bottle, when we moved in but now it's fall-ish. I would love to carve pumpkins but it's not really realistic for us to since we don't have a porch suitable for putting them on. So instead I picked up a few mini pumpkins. I decorated the rest with left over flowers/etc from the wreath I made that you'll see below.
I was browsing on the website for Michael's a while ago looking for thrifty but still cute home decor and found this awesome idea. The open back frame acts as a place to put anything you want in the center and can be changed easily. For now, I bought an on sale garland wreath for the base structure and bought a 50% off small bouquet of fall flowers to add to it. The dollar store had really nice, wire-ribbon that I made a quick bow out of and glued on too. I had extras of everything to use on our shelf.
I'm already thinking about what I'll do for the holiday season. Maybe an ornament wreath? We'll see. We hung the frame over our couch because the wall had been needing something there. It's still needs something else, maybe something for each side next to the frame but this is a good start.
Please ignore the Christmas coffee cup in the corner, I know it's a little early but it's all I have. Oops.
Since I am now the proud owner of a Brother's sewing machine (thanks to my awesome skills at the casino a few weekends ago) I decided to whip up this baby. Joann Fabrics had their fall fabrics 60% the other week and I really loved this one. I know it wont be fall forever but I figured with a little seam ripper I can take this fabric off, replace it with something new in December, save this fabric for next year and always have a pillow for the season.
Even Ollie matches the decor. :-) What a good boy.
Last but not least, I found these little guys for $1 in the Target Clearance bins. I know I probably could have made something similar but for a $1 I wasn't going to spend the time trying to figure it out. They are sitting on our entertainment center next to the TV in front of our photo album. I would show you a larger picture but honestly, our shelves are a mess and I would be ashamed to post that picture :-) Even though they're different colors than the other fabric I used, I have a reoccurring plaid theme for fall. I like it.
So even though it is currently 80 degrees here in SD, at least it seems like fall in our home.

Happy Thursday everyone!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tagged

It's about time that I got caught up on reading all the blogs that I've missed. I thought I had been doing at least a decent job.... then I realized only yesterday that I had been tagged by Nikki at The Fashionable Wife in a game of getting to know me almost two weeks ago!

Bad blogger friend, Jayme, bad!

So with that said here's how to play. Nikki asked everyone she tagged 8 different questions. To play, you respond to these 8 questions about yourself and then make 8 of your own questions. To pass it along you're supposed to tag 8 other bloggers and the game continues.

However, considering I'm a little pressed for time this morning (Ochem studying beckons) I'm just going to tag anyone and EVERYONE who wants to play! I'd love to read about all of your lives so let me know if you end up playing along.
____________________________________________

1. What is your favorite book?
Currently I am loving The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo series. I just finished the first book and can't wait for my mom to get here for Thanksgiving to let me borrow her copy of the second. But my all time favorite book has to be Like Water For Chocolate by Laura Esquivet. It's about a young girl in a big family and is filled with love, romance, heartbreak and recipes!

2. How did you meet your significant other?
J and I met when we were both working at the same outdoor pools for the summers while I was still in high school. I started life-guarding there the summer after sophomore year and we knew each other my first summer at the pools. However, we didn't really get to know each other too well for the first couple years I worked there. It wasn't until the summer after my senior year that we really hit it off. I had been moved to a different facility and he happened to take a sub-shift there one day. One thing led to another, I happened to secretly put my phone number in his phone (total high school move I might add), he called, we went out and have been together ever since!

3. If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?
I've been fortunate enough to do a bunch of traveling with my family to different islands (like Antigua) because we all love to scuba dive. However, and this is not to say that I don't love the beach and pina coladas and warm weather, I would absolutely love to go to Ireland and/or Italy. And a special note is that I want to go there (or anywhere) with J and J only. I love my family but I'd love to travel with him more.

4. What is your favorite thing to do in your spare time?
I love being crafty and I love having something to work on that's fun. Whether it's knitting a blanket, putting pictures in frames, making embroidery-floss bracelets, using my new sewing machine (that hasn't gotten nearly enough use yet) or anything else, I'll sit and do it for hours. J's family has a tradition to make homemade gifts for Christmas and I can't wait to get started making mine. I've been doing a few fun things around our apartment that I'll be sharing soon.

5. If you didn't have to worry about money, what would be your dream job?
My dream job happens to be what I'm working on attaining. I want to be a Doctor. Specifically what kind of doctor I don't know yet but I'm sure I'll find my place once I manage to get into medical school. Now if only money really wasn't an issue and paying to send my AMCAS application and secondaries didn't leave my bank account with a sad face. Anyone care to lend me a few hundred dollars?

6. What is one thing that never fails to make you feel better after a long or hard day?
There are many things that belong in this category so I'll list a few.
- Coffee. At any time of day. And specifically, it makes my day 100 times better if I'm able to sit inside a Starbucks and enjoy the time without having to run here or study this or take care of that. But either way, give me a cup of Joe (like a Toffee Mocha) and I'll be happy.
- Clean sheets. I absolutely love getting into bed when it's brand new, folded nicely, and fresh as can be.
- Snuggling of any sort. Whether it's with J or with Ollie being able to shut my mind off for just a min and relax being with someone I love is such a blessing. My days lately have been so crazy and constantly thinking about something/stressing about something else/trying to do ten things at once, that I appreciate the down time I have even more.

7. What is your favorite thing to cook/bake? Or what is your best recipe?
I love to make anything dessert related. Whether it's cookies, or cakes, or pies etc etc I absolutely love it. Baking Christmas cookies is one of my favorite parts of the whole year as a matter of fact. This whole love may or may not have to do with my love for eating these items after they're done. ;-) To answer the second question, my favorite/best personal recipe has to be my Chili. I've changed the original recipe enough to be able to consider it my own and it always makes me happy to see J enjoy is so much.

8. What is your favorite thing in your closet? What is the one fashion thing you want the most?
I have a dress that I really enjoy wearing but find myself forgetting about it from time to time. It's super comfortable and casual, made of sweatshirt material, has pockets and a hood and looks good paired with my traditional navy Keds. I also adore my newest pair of American Eagle jeans, my tie-dye t-shirts, and my ArcTeryx jacket.
_____________________________________

Here are my questions for anyone else who wants to play.

1. Do you live in/near the town where you grew up? Why did you leave/what made you stay depending on your first answer?
2. Which chore around the house do you not mind doing and which do you absolutely hate?
3. What was the most recent movie you saw in the theaters?
4. Who in your family do you look most alike? Or do you not look like anyone?
5. Which would you choose/do you like more: cake or pie? Fruits or veggies? Coke or Pepsi?
6. What was your favorite part about high school?
7. What is one of your guilty pleasures?
8. If you could be any TV show character who would you be and why?
(These questions are fun enough I might have to make a post with my own answers)

I hope you've enjoyed getting to know me a little more and I'm glad I got to play along. Thanks Nikki!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Rain, rain go AWAY

1. I need to learn to stop over cooking my oatmeal.... I'm not a fan of it being super gooey and that's how it keeps turning out.

2. Ollie acts like a big teenager when we wake up on Monday mornings. Yesterday he slept in until 10am (what a good sleeper) and then when 6 rolled around today he was not too happy. He refuses to not be laying down, he grunts and yawns and tries to go back to sleep. He's pretty much adorable.

3. I've finally finished some fall decorating in our apartment so keep an eye out if your interested in seeing what I've done. I'll be writing a post as soon as I can get some decent pictures.

4. We are out of milk which drives me crazy. I always want coffee and cereal in the mornings and the whole trying-not-to-spend-money thing when I can just make it myself is much harder when I'm struggling to wake up and need some caffeine. Why didn't I just go to the store yesterday when I had the time?

5. Does anyone have any suggestions of where else I should apply to medical school? I'm having a hard time increasing my number of schools because the ones I've already applied to are the ones I really love. I know I need to expand my list by at least 2 or 3 more schools, I'm just having a hard time deciding where. Where do you live? Do you like it? Is there a med school near by?

6. Its pouring here today and I am NOT A FAN! I despise the rain. Like seriously. There's no way to avoid getting wet. It takes twice (if not more) as long to get anywhere because people in Southern California freak out with a few drops and suddenly no one knows how to drive anymore. It makes taking Ollie out more difficult because he just wants to play and then comes in soaking. I absolutely hate having the bottom of my pants wet so I always wear shorts. Everywhere on campus is so much more crowded because everyone's crammed inside.

I'm done. I'm sorry. For all of you that enjoy the rain, I don't understand you but sometimes I wish I had your mindset so days like today wouldn't be so miserable for me. At least I get to wear my hot pink Crocs when it rains. (Don't judge me.)

Happy [rainy] Monday Everyone

Sunday, October 24, 2010

OOTD & Changes in Appearance

This post is looooong overdue, I apologize. A few weeks ago J "up-ed" his boyfriend status and took me on a shopping spree. He read this post and decided to take me shopping for a few new things for fall. I could not have been happier.

Flash forward to last weekend and we were going out to the casino for a fun Saturday night. I decided it would be a perfect opportunity for me to wear some of my new clothes. I thought I'd share what I wore that night.
Jeans: American Eagle Slim Boot
Floral Tank: Charlotte Russe
Beige Sweater: American Eagle
Brown Heals: Target
(sorry no picture)
I can't tell you where I got my necklace because honestly, it's not a necklace. It's an extra strap for a clutch purse I bought years ago and have never used (I thought it was a little odd.) But with a little knot it makes a great accessory. :-)
I even took the time to curl my hair that night. Something I haven't done in forever. I'm so happy my hair is starting to be considered long again. (For those of you that don't know, I chopped it all off 2 summers ago to donate to Locks of Love.)

If you're in search of a new pair of jeans I highly recommend the ones I bought from American Eagle. It literally doesn't feel like I'm wearing jeans because the denim is soft and stretchy with no tough edges around the waste. I tried on a pair of their new "Jeggings" and I am definitely not a fan, at least on me I guess.

PS- I've made some changes to my blog appearance if you haven't noticed and I think I'm happy with the changes. It took some tweeking to get it the way I wanted. Hope you like the new design.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Lists Sooth My Soul and Other Unrelated Things

My life has been pretty dang busy lately so that any down time I have is usually spent doing absolutely nothing so my brain can rest, catching up on my DVR shows or spending time with J and the pup. However, I thought it was about time that I checked back into blog-world (I am still reading everyone else's blogs even when I'm gone just FYI) and do a little update.

I've been obsessed/required for my sanity to keep everything in list form lately so that's how this will be too :-)

CONS
- I'm busy, if you haven't figured that out by now

- The vet was wrong about Ollie's flea situation. We followed exactly what she said, Benadryl and all, until Sunday night when we were playing on the floor and I found a live flea on him. This sparked a full body search, spraying with bug spray and finding at least half a dozen more fleas.

- Yesterday I had to Flea Fog our apartment. Talk about stressful! Maybe I was being over-paranoid about it but I was freaked out that something would spark a fire while it was going off so I unplugged everything in our whole apartment. That on top of disabling the smoke detectors, covering anything important, setting off two "bombs" and running, and spending 2+ hours out of the apartment with Ollie. I'm glad it's over.

- I'm making slooooow progress on the secondary application I'm currently working on! I would absolutely love to go to any possible school that will accept me but schools that aren't really high on my list have fallen to the back burner right now. And that needs to change. Today and tomorrow are dedicated to essay writing it is.

- It's only 7 weeks into the semester right now... I can't wait for it to be over already. Hopefully 9 weeks is enough time to get things under control.

- The weather in SD this fall, if you can even call it that, is really making me miss home this year for some reason. I truly miss seasons. This was the conversation at work this morning:

Ashley (age 4): I like fall time because you can jump in leaves.
Brendon (dad): What kind of leaves do you plan on jumping in? Palm tree leaves?

She's clearly influenced by a kids book about weather since leaf piles don't exist here like there are other places.

PROS
- I aced my first ochem test of the semester. I was worried that this class would be more difficult than the first semester but so far so good.

- J and I finally made it to the gym last night and I can happily say that I have a good-workout soreness going for me today. And it feels nice. I really hope I and/or we can make it back again soon.

- The "bombing" incident mentioned above did have it's perks. I got to spend time hanging out with the pup and taking him new places. He loves car rides so we went all over. On the list of course was Starbucks. I was beyond content sitting outside, drinking a mocha, reading my book, and looking at this below me. He likes the Bucks too.
- While at Target today I picked up the candy corn that I've been craving ever since it turned October. I bought the Autumn Mix because I love the pumpkin shaped ones plus the traditional ones. There may or may not have been a splurge for fall-colored peanut M&Ms too ;-)

- Last weekend we went on our first family hike. Granted we only went 2 miles, which amounts to maybe a quarter or a third up the mountain, but it was a great day! If it wasn't so warm here still we would have gone farther but our furry friend was roasting. He climbed like a pro and I was so proud of him.

- It's already 7 weeks into the semester right now. I can't believe were almost half way done. I hope these last 9 weeks go fast so Christmas time can come!

- One of the best times of my whole day, just ahead of when my head hits the pillow, are my morning snuggle sessions with my boy. He looooves our good belly rub and I just adore him.
- I've finally finished The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and absolutely loved it and can't wait to start the second book. Keep an eye out for a book review on my "I'm Reading What?" page if you want to hear more about it.

Happy Hump Day Everyone

Friday, October 8, 2010

Save The TaTas

In case you didn't know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. So get out there...

do a walk to help raise money,
paint your nails pink,
buy Panera pink ribbon bagles,
encourage those around you to look into tests and how important early detection really is
and....

Watch this awesome video, it just melts my heart.

♥ Enjoy ♥

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

An Itchy Update

After all the commotion of vacuuming and laundry and a slight freak out when I looked closely at the back of his hind legs to see them covered in splotches/bumps/red, we were off to the vet with the pup. And thank goodness we went.

Thankfully Ollie does not have fleas....
Although at one point he was in contact with them.

We have him on a preventative medicine already, First Shield specifically, so I was doubtful that it completely failed but was worried that maybe the medicine didn't soak in enough before we went in the ocean. Both the nurse and the doctor were unable to actually find any live fleas on him; both from looking closely and from using a flea comb (and believe me, the Dr went to town with that comb.) So that was a very good sign. They did find the Flea Dirt that I mentioned in my previous post, just like I thought I saw. The combination of the dirt and his red splotchy legs were signs that he had been bitten by fleas, emphasis on the bitten (not infiltrated by a flea army.) The doctor then told me that his itching, irritation, and redness was most likely caused by an allergic reaction to the bites themselves. Phew.

So we walked away with a bottle of home flea/tick mist to spray on our furniture, his bed, the carpet, etc etc (just incase there was a female flea on him and she decides to reproduce) and a correct dosage of Benadryl to hopefully make him less itchy and uncomfortable. We want to make sure that his excessive scratching and biting doesn't open up his skin in any places and make him more prone to an infection, hence the Benadryl.

Crisis avoided.

Tomorrow I'm going to spray down our apartment with the mist and we have to keep him on Benadryl two times a day for a week and go from there. I am so happy that we don't have a bigger problem on our hands.... at least for now. Knock on wood. For now, I have a sleeping puppy on the porch probably due partly from his lack of napping all day (the vacuum commotion and vet trip kept him awake) and some drowsiness from the meds.

Finally, I want to say thank you so much ladies for all your kind words, concern and good suggestions on my last post! I'm sure we all hold our furry friends near and dear to our hearts and it was nice hearing such sweet things from you in my time of crisis worry.

Got an itch?

We might have a little problem on our hands.
This little cutie went to the beach on Saturday and while he absolutely loved it and it knocked him out for the rest of the day and we were even able to let him run off his leash....

we think he may have fleas now.

After the beach we noticed he was a little red down-under near his man parts. I honestly thought he had a bad case of chaffing: it was red, there were little specks of black (which I thought were sand), he was running in salt water for hours... it seemed logical to me. The next day it was significantly less red so I thought it was confirmed.

Then he started itching, a lot. Yes, I know dogs itch but it seemed like significantly more than usual. And all over his legs and belly. He would itch with his foot and go crazy with his little front teeth. His skin was getting red and I kept noticing the little black specks. This is when I knew it was something different.

So thanks to Google, I learned that the little black specks are called Flea Dirt and are basically excrement from the fleas. They say you can scratch some of them off onto white paper and add water to them and they'll turn redish brown because they're actually bits of blood. However, Ollie was not in the mood to have me scratching around near his junk to get some of them off so I can't be certain about that. I made an appointment at the vet and were going in a few hours.

I'm not thinking that getting rid of the fleas on him is going to be very difficult. There are flea shampoos, collars, medicines, etc etc. The thing that I'm really worried about is our apartment. Because cleaning the pup is only half the battle and it wont do any good to wash him if there's more fleas in our apartment.

So I spent the morning doing laundry on his bed cover, the towels he sleeps with, the pillows on the couches, and the blankets on the couches. I then deep vacuumed our whole apartment; every spot on the floors, moved all the furniture to get under & behind them all, used the vacuum adapter to get on and in all the cushions. I plan on repeating this process on Thursday morning and again this weekend. The trusty internet said that the first step to getting them gone is to vacuum. Then to use some type of insecticide.

I'm hoping that we caught the problem early enough that infestation shouldn't be a huge issue for us and we wont have to result to fogging our apartment or anything too crazy. I haven't actually seen any live fleas and J and I don't have any signs of bites. I know it'll all be fine in the end but believe me, this is not how I planned on spending my Tuesday.

Have any of you ever dealt with dogs and fleas?
What did you do/do you have any tips?

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Day #1

I'm taking a little less serious and different approach instead of a literal answer to my 30 Day Challenge Day #1 prompt so bear with me....

Something you hate about yourself

I hate that:

* I haven't been able to motivate myself to take time to go to the gym lately. I feel like a slob. We've been eating out a lot and not eating very healthy at home either and it just puts my whole body in a funk. I think gym time needs to go back up higher on my priority list.

* I don't have a ton of money to update my wardrobe like I wish I could. I'm in desperate want (not need) of a shopping spree. Some new jeans, a handful of flowing or knit or floral or anything from Forever 21 tops, some cute new heals or boots.... stop me I'm drooling.

* I can't figure out if I want real bangs, side bangs or no bangs. I always feel like I want whichever I don't have... ain't that the truth for life though? I hope that I'll be happier with my hair once it grows a little more and it's out of this awkward partly-grown-out-but-not-quite-enough stage.

* I haven't heard back about any interviews yet. As if the stress from school and secondaries I haven't finished yet isn't enough I hate the waiting game even more. Why does it have to be such a tough process?

* it feels nothing like fall around these parts lately. I know, I know, I live in San Diego but come ooooon. It was 100+ just a week ago so this coming week of 70's in the forecast is looking mighty pleasing. I'm not wanting to wear boots and scarves and jackets yet but it'd be nice to be able to wear pants at least.

* my puppy is getting so big. He is 4 months and 1 week old and weighs 52.2 lbs according to our "super accurate" measuring techniques aka Jeff weighs himself and then holds Ollie and weighs again.

* I can't be the one to weigh Ollie anymore. I seriously can't lift and hold him for more than up onto the bed. Another reason for me to get back to the gym? I think so.

* my hair isn't as curly as it used to be. I really have to work to get the natural, beachy-look these days and I think it's effecting my hair's ability to hold any style now too.

* I've been so MIA from blog land lately. I feel like I haven't even been keeping up on reading other people's blogs let alone posting anything for myself. And the worst of it all is that I don't really have a good excuse this time. So I'd like to say that I love anyone and everyone that is still reading my blog and I appreciate all your comments and love and mentions and everything. I promise I'll be better.

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