Basically, I eat about 7 things. Over and over and over again. Today I tried to introduce my body to homemade Rice Krispie Treats (RKTs). I’m not even sure if making them counts as “cooking” – I’d say it’s just melting and mixing – something I’m sure plenty of third graders have mastered. I, however, am apparently incapable of making this supposedly delicious treat.

I made a special trip to the grocery store for the occasion, and it took me about 21 minutes to find the marshmallows (which I want to spell: marshmellows, okay?). Rice Krispies were on sale for $2 and that really pleased me – at least enough to stop wondering why the marshmellows weren’t on the baking aisle.

When I got home, I started melting the butter and marshmellows in a big bowl. Then I got out my rectangle circle pan. Apparently I don’t own a rectangle? So I was all:

I have a circle.

I have a circle!

Look at my circle.

It’s a circle!

And then my marshmellows and butter turned into a big puffy white thunder cloud.
I inspected it closely and thought:

Huh. Can this be right?

And I thought:

Uh-Oh!  This is not bueno.

Do you ever think that to yourself? I know you do. What's your not bueno face? 

And then I realized I hadn’t greased my pan because I was busy taking pictures of myself with my potential RKTs. So my marshmellow cloud collapsed and hardened while I frantically rubbed the end of a stick of butter all over my circle. And then I realized I hadn’t measured the cereal because I was busy taking pictures of myself with my circle. So by now I pretty much knew it was over and I only half heartedly mixed and mashed my treats into my freshly buttered and well photographed circle.

They were terrible. The end.

But PS: Did you sing the circle song when you read it?  Go back and sing it and it'll be way better.  If any of my family members want to disown me, they can.  Well, except for my dad because I'm wearing my Steelers shirt.

Okay, the for real end.


An Ashley Birthday

Today is Ashley's birthday, yay!  We celebrated her last night by eating at Nix, dropping by Dandelion Market, and getting our dance party on at Phil’s. We will always remember Ashley’s 28th birthday because it is the day that I wore a fur vest, she wore a leather capelet, we both wore over the knee boots, and it was 100 degrees in Charlotte. Not really, but I think it did get up to 70. 70 in February! As always, we took a ton of pictures. They make me laugh. Mostly just because I’m wearing a fur vest:

Hey! And we found D-Will, Fecil, Dorian, and the BRT (Black Ryan Taylor). I’m allowed to call him the BRT because it’s true. And he knows it. And likes it. Plus, the CRT (Caucasian Ryan Taylor) started it. So there:

"One of these things is not like the other, one of these things just doesn’t belong."

And then there’s this, which simultaneously makes me laugh out loud and think: Dang, my boyfriend is smoking hot.  What is he doing with a fool like me?  Ooo, and how are my molars?:

That was fun. Did I offend? Shake it off.  Today I'm feeling fiesty and I want you to like it.  It's new.

Happy birthday, Ashley!  I sure do think you're the cat's pajamas!


Spending Freeze

So I’m on a spending freeze until … um … September. This makes my heart weep. Maybe you don’t know how much I love to shop, but it’s a lot. We’ll see how long this really lasts – I mean, of course I’ll need to eat and pay my cell phone bill and all that other adult stuff that I think is bananas. Oh, and maybe buy the occasional new dress, like this one:

But for now, I’m trying my best: avoiding the mall, TJ Maxx, and all of the adorable little boutiques in my neighborhood. [Insert the noise of my weeping heart here.] In case you don’t know, I only have six more weeks of employment. And then the rest of my life starts. You know, the part where I’ll be Teaching for America. And when I think about that, my heart stops weeping and I can’t help but smile. Because I know this is what I’m supposed to do. With or without that fabulous dress.


What The What

Although I’m not a wife (surprise!) or a mom (surprise!), I love this.  Love, love, and capital LOVE.  You should click on it.  And read. Most of the blogs I read happen to be about mommyhood or wifelyhood, and although I can’t always relate, I totally get this.  I love Jami’s honesty, and it takes a brave and humble soul to really put it all out there.  And I love this: "what the what is this all about?" Because really, what the what is this all about?!
And PS: My mom thinks I’m a total weirdo for talking about these women like they are my friends.  But I mean – let's be real here – they are … even if it is totally one sided.


Sweet Words

You loved me big and I loved you bigger. You loved me biggest and I loved you biggester.
And so it grows. I want to write this story forever. I promise to love you big and love you always.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

I hope you enjoy celebrating this Valentine's Day with your honey. 
I think we should celebrate with sweet words every day.  And today sounds like the perfect day to begin. Ready? Set? Go.


Last Night

We had a surprise Saturday last night. I was enjoying a big bowl of penne al verde at the bar of Strike City and Ryan was watching me eat. I ate slowly – penne by penne, broccoli by broccoli – while we waited for our movie to start upstairs. We had tickets for No Strings Attached, but our plans quickly changed when we found friends who were going to Belmont to see a band. Turns out that that band we thought was playing definitely wasn’t, and we dropped in on prom night at Jax. The band was actually decent (complete with an upright bass), and it wasn’t prom night – 21 year olds just look like they at 17 to me now. This is a sure sign of me getting really old.

We danced some dances, and Ryan played bongos on the band’s empty tip jar. I got to catch up with our friend Hannah, and Ryan even got to see a little of his friend Mick. It was good.  I am having some hair dilemmas that we can discuss later.


Home, Yes - Back, No

Since we’re being honest, I feel like I should tell you that being back in Charlotte is kind of bananas. Minus Rex, because he’s always bananas, which cancels itself out. Plus I missed him like crazy, so even if he had shaved his head and toilet papered the house when I was gone, I would still love him.

There were snow sprinkles on my car this morning. Snow sprinkles! It made my heart shrivel up a little while I was scraping it off my windshield. Snow is bananas. So I double wrapped my neck in my leopard print scarf, cranked up the heat, and pretended I was back here:

I’m just not quite ready to be back.  Home, yes.  But back, no.  Can I place a delivery order for a happily ever after with a side of permanent sunshine?  I'll take a homemade Sunday waffle, too.

Also, I'm watching Mean Girls.  Mainly because my remote control can only change the volume and I'm too lazy to get up, but may I say that this is a brilliant movie?  Don't judge me.



We are home. 
As you can see, the flight back to Charlotte on the corporate plane was pretty tough. 

And am allowed to brag about how hot my boyfriend looks in a suit?



Last night we celebrated our 23rd seventh. I love Miami. I love being in Miami with the person I love. I love being in Miami with the person I love, eating fresh veggies, white rice, and a good glass of pinot noir. I love love. We went to Nobu. Nobu is something that I would maybe name a minature pet tiger.

Taking pictures in Miami with the person I love is hard when it’s just the two of us. But please note that we looked sun-kissed and fabulous. I wore the same shirt that I wore almost a year ago to the Black Eyed Peas concert. It sat in my "to be dry cleaned" pile for eleven months. And then it was resurrected by the 7th Street dry cleaner.

Happy 23rd seventh, Ryan. We are almost two! I think we should be one hundred one day.  Want to?

Do you know how much I love you in Miami and San Diego?  21:21 just turned into 23:23 and my heart is happy to be here with you.


Quiero Vivir Aquí

I love Miami. We are staying here, and it is the perfect combination of modern meets wood, city meets beach, and gray meets yellow. I want to live here. Forever. Our room has a skinny spiral staircase that goes all the way up to a private rooftop balcony, and did I mention that I want to live here? Forever?

We spent yesterday catching up on our sleep. On the beach. It was amazing. And then we ate dinner outside without gloves on:

Do you want to visit me when I live here every winter? I already made new friends:

Because I hablo español. Just kidding. These guys didn’t speak Spanish. But they were hilarious. We also met a guy who was dancing the night away in a wrestling singlet. And then I asked a different stranger to take this picture:

He didn’t habla English, so I said one or two word phrases in Spanish that probably made me sound estúpida. I really wanted to say: “Si! Por supuesto!” because that’s my favorite thing ever to say, but it just didn’t fit in. Neither did: “Es un gato negro” or “El hombre corre”. I need to hop on Rosetta Stone. My vocabulary blows.

Did I mention I want to vivo aquí?


Miami For Real

We made it!

For weeks I've been singing:
Welcome to Miami,
Bienvenidos a Miami!

Now it's finally for real. And we are happy.


A Different Kind of Today

So this today is not a favorite one. We were looking forward to getting to Miami, but it turns out that despite specific requests to only cancel our initial flight to San Diego and to keep the remainder of the trip intact (San Diego to LA, LA to Miami, and Miami to Charlotte), everything was completely cancelled. Right now we are on hour number four at LAX, and we have two, three, or thirteen more to go, depending on which flight to Miami we can squeeze on to. Sometimes things just don’t work out like we want them to. And then flying just doesn’t seem like the cat’s meow anymore. Especially when it is standby. And then your hotel loses your reservation, too!

"What is wrong with today?!"

One day, we’ll be able to look back and laugh. Since today is not that day, let’s look at this San Diego elephant and put on our happy pants. (I just finished reading Water for Elephants. I highly recommend it  even though my mom doesn't.)

And to end a positive note, I’m learning lots of airport announcements in Spanish. Bienvenidos a Los Angeles!



Today was maybe a favorite day. It started with a whole grain bagel and a smoothie served in a glass. Where I come from, smoothies are served in styrofoam cups that say Smoothie King on them, but this was the real deal California style fresh fruit and yogurt in a glass kind, and it was amazing. I relaxed at the relaxation pool and read Water for Elephants while my Praxis study guide stared at me from a side table. (Do you know how good I am at procrastinating? I’m maybe the best – especially when it comes to packing and studying.) Ryan finished up with his morning work obligations, and met me outside. I ordered a tomato mozzarella sandwich and then put on a bathing suit (yikes!) to get into the hot tub. The hot tub was hot. So we got out and snuggled on a chaise to soak up the sun before our spa appointments.

We got prettied up, and after dinner, Glenn Frey from the Eagles entertained us with songs I had never heard. Apparently the Eagles were kind of a big deal? Ryan said my parents would know and I should ask them. After the show, our sweet friend Korrie – of Korrie and Brian who got married in September and now live in China – told me that she was going to give me her bracelet at the end of the night. So I said, okay! And she did. How sweet! Apparently China is the place to live if you like to bargain shop.  Thank you, Korrie!

The day I did absolutely nothing, got a February sun burn, a massage, and a bracelet was today. I love today. Tomorrow is Miami. I aleady love tomorrow.  PS:  The day I got a manicure and pedicure was yesterday.  Someone is getting a little spoiled.  I need a reality check before I get too used to this lifestyle.


Zoo Awards

We made it to the zoo!  Zoos are always kind of sad, and the animals tend to be either overly sleepy or stir crazy.  But, I love all creatures big and small, and San Diego has a beautiful zoo, so I’m glad we got to spend the afternoon there. (Even though Ryan told me it cost me a pair of Uggs. I didn’t know I had a choice between boots and creature viewing … he’s supposed to tell me these things in advance!)  We both had major camera failures – mine, an uncharged battery and Ryan's, a forgotten memory card.  That being said, most of the good pictures are on Ryan’s iPhone.  But, we’ll start with these:

Zoo Awards

Sun Bears: Best Wrestling Performance
Big Cats: Sleepiest
Hippo: Youngest Creature (Only 1 week old.)
Birds: Biggest Waste of Space (Oops. Sorry, but nobody goes to the zoo to see birds.)
Panda: Most Entertaining Eater and Cutest
Turtle: Bravest (He was giving an alligator a back rub!)
Cheetahs: Most Interesting Story (Each baby cheetah is paired with a puppy companion and then they become best friends forever and live happily ever after together.)
Monkeys: Best Acrobatics and Longest Tails
Meerkats: Haha. I just love them.
Food Creatures (I can’t remember what they are called. Lion snacks and tiger appetizers?): Most Appreciative of Captivity
Jaguar: Best Rex Look Alike

More pictures to come.


San Diego So Far

Despite this being the longest day in the history of ever, San Diego so far is amazing.  Absolutely amazing.  For example, please see...

The view from the plane:

Our bathroom through (another!) hole in the wall:

The (heated) quiet pool.  Okay, it isn't really called the quiet pool, but I can't remember the big fancy word they used because my head translated it to "quiet" too quickly:

And a sidewalk sized for a cat (this is obviously my favorite thing in all of California):

A post-publishing note:  I woke up today and remembered that it is called the relaxation pool.  Sometimes I just have to laugh at myself.

Airport Adventures

Our coast to coast adventure has certainly risen to its name thus far. Minus the coast part. After waking up at 4 and getting to the airport about an hour and a half later, we learned that our flight to California had been cancelled. So, no biggie, we rescheduled and waited patiently for Texas to defrost. And then our flight was cancelled again because the Dallas airport decided to close its doors completely. And then we went home and took a nap. This was key because we both kind of woke up on the wrong side of the bed, if you know what I mean. I'm allowed to tell you that because it's true. We needed a total redo of this morning. So we got one. Hooray.

So, now we are flying on the Criminal Minds plane with the FBI. Just kidding. But Ryan’s company hooked it up with letting us fly on the chartered plane directly to San Diego. The plane has WiFi. And sandwiches and little jars of jelly beans. And also a couch if you so please. I totally want to snap about 87 pictures, but I don’t want to be that girl. Remember last year when we went to Kiawah Island and had a crawl through wall in our room? That’s what we’re doing again. Except Kiawah turned into San Diego. And a rental Jeep Liberty turned into an 8 passenger Challenger 300 (I only know that because it says so).

Unfortunately all of these cancellations have caused us to cancel our zoo trip for today. Did you know that San Diego is supposed to have the best zoo ever? We are still going to make a valiant effort to go. And Krista is babysitting Rex, in case you were thinking about him when I mentioned the zoo.

I’m sad that I don’t have pictures for you. I pretty much look like I’ve been awake since 4. So. Picture that. Life is funny sometimes.