Las Vegas 2015

April 28, 2015

on a scale of 1 to kylie jenner's lips, how much do you not want to hear about a vacation recap?  yeah, i hear you.  i did go to vegas, i am back, and i am going to post pictures but i am not doing a recap or review or any of that.  except maybe some money saving tips, next week if i feel like it.

so let's just sum it up real quick and get to the part where i post pictures i look pretty in: we booked a trip to vegas for our 2 year anniversary (aw cute), included john's brother eric and his girlfriend beth, stayed at caesars palace on the strip (for free, thanks to my dad's frequent gambler credits), walked 21,000 steps in one day (yup), drank a lot, bet a lot, ate a lot, went to downtown vegas plus about 10 hotels/casinos on the strip, came home having broken even.  didn't see shows because i've been to vegas 20 times and i've seen them all and didn't do clubs because i hate clubbing.  and crowds.  and 21 year olds.  laid out by the pool to try to recover, but i still need another vacation.

any questions?  cool, here's photos.

10 Best // Avoid People

April 16, 2015

1. netflix: i'm still catching up on friends.  i'm almost to the end of season 5, i've never seen an episode before this, and no, i do not like it one bit.  at this point i'm just determined to finish, but when i can't take their whiny-ness and inability to be actual adults despite the fact that they're supposed to be my age, i switch to sons of anarchy.  if you're looking for more binge watching ideas, check jenn's list.  i agree with all of them.

2. bake: lemon cookies!  i have to do this, my dad would love them.

3. make: homemade dog treats.  how cute is the pb & fruit ice?

4. listen: podcasts.  i still haven't done the whole serial thing.  i know, i know.  but i do love gretchen rubin so i think i'll start there on rachael's podcast picks.

5. create: your own city map.  it's kind of genius, particularly for traveling to a city you've never been to.  just map everything you want to see plus where you're staying and you'll be able to take the quickest routes and prevent re-tracing your steps all over the place.

6. laugh: (and also don't do these things) "you might be an annoying customer if..."

7. blog: alanna has two tips for you for using picmonkey - drop shadow text and watermarks, and text masks and sparkle text.  get workin' on those images.

8. learn: car buying. i've held out this long (30 years old and never had a car) so i'm hoping i can hold out forever.  but in case i can't, at least holly has tips on getting a good deal.

9. watch: 4 steps to stress-free homemaking.  the first free video is available now, it's about laundry.  yup, yup, i need that.

10. earn money: if you're not doing anything else this weekend, might as well earn those swagbucks.  i have a few tutorials (search swagbucks in the search bar over to the right) on how to earn money.  i earn at least $100 a month.  they also started a new thing where your first $25 (2,500 swagbucks) gift card of the month is only $22 (2,200 swagbucks.)  i like saving even more money, particularly when it's free to start with.

My Love for the 101 in 1001 List

April 13, 2015

as of today, i've crossed 86 things off my current 101 in 1001 list, and i'm quite close on a couple more (like that brazilian wax on thursday that i'm willing myself not to skip.)  so, i'm almost done.  not almost done with the time frame - i actually have until the end of next march to complete my 1001 day time frame.  but almost done with the things on the list.  i'm willing to accept that there's at least 3 things that i definitely won't accomplish.  which really isn't that bad when you consider that i started with 101.  i think that's closer than a lot of people get.  plus, i should be finishing what i realistically think i can accomplish by this fall, and since july marks the 2 year mark i'd say that's pretty darn good.

in case you're somehow blissfully unaware of all the goal related posts on here, let me take this moment to inform you that i love making goals and i love making lists.  it's two adult-like skills that i mastered at a young age - some kids watched cartoons, i made to-do lists and systematically checked off each color-coordinated task.  [i actually did have friends, believe it or not, and they stuck around through today.  ida, sorry i made you take 'baking class' which was really just us in a kitchen with my mom while i made sure all the candy roses lined up exactly on the tips of the perfectly portioned chocolate spoons, always in the same order.]

anyway, the idea of a 101 in 1001 list seemed like a natural fit so i dove right in and got Betsy on board.  [and made her start a blog so apparently i'm bossy as well as ocd.]  and indeed, i have found that i like it much better than other types of goal setting, be it resolutions or seasonal goals, or an unending bucket list.  i assume it's because of the time frame imposed - less than a bucket list but more than just 1 year, which is what always stumps me on resolutions.

plus the tracking.  always the tracking.  that's why i put it online (multiple places even); so i can visually track my progress by checking things off and also feel the slight pressure to perform since everyone can see it and will know when i don't finish something.  i work better under pressure.  i know that makes it sound like the list is some big scary thing that i don't want to do and that's why i need you to keep me accountable.  but it's just the opposite (because how many of you, besides Betsy, actually notice when i do or don't do something on the list?)  i like mostly every thing i added to the list, that's why i put it there.  plus a few things i don't like at all but really needed to do, like completing a fitness challenge.  i already hated jillian michaels, so that worked out.  and though i loved the list and working towards completing it, i didn't spend as long thinking up my goals when i first made it.  i definitely tweaked a lot of them as my life shifted.

which brings me to my 2nd 101 in 1001 list, because i'm definitely doing it again.  i love the feeling that i accomplished so much and hey, look at that online diary of all the productive ways i spent my time.  and i can't believe how many i finished early on that i've already forgotten about.  in an effort to make this list much more 'me' and productive as well as fun, round 2 is going to look quite a bit different, at least in terms of the categories and types of goals i want to accomplish.

seeing what i tweaked and struggled with in the last 2 years made me much more mindful of what to put on this second list.  2.75 years seems like awhile, but it goes by surprisingly quickly, so it's best not to put a ton of big, expensive ideas on there.  for myself in particular, i just had to be logical and not make travel it's own category this time - i. hate. travel.  i just do.  i don't like being away from my dog and my home and i hate flying.  so i limited anything travel related this time.  just because other people love it doesn't mean i have to. 

although the ideas aren't set in stone, you can check out my preliminary list here.  i'll still be editing quite a bit before the start date, and i have plenty of time!  if i wait it out until the end of my current list, it'll be 1 year until i start this next one.  but i'm terribly impatient, so i'll probably start it january 1, or even this winter when i'm sure i can't complete anything else on the current list.

what about you?  101 lists, goals lists?  i'm always looking for more ideas.

On Blogging, Almost Three Years Later

April 7, 2015

it's true - almost 3 years here in this little space.  you'll see in the archives that my first post is from june 2012, but it was actually may.  i deleted it.  it was about clothes i think.  (probably a wish list like 'hey mom, i need this dress' because if your mother won't read your blog, who will?  p.s. hi mom.)  and there's been many, many posts since.  on a variety of topics, sometimes even 5 days a week.

not that all those posts are marvelous little writing gems, but you'd still think i'd run out of things to say in 3 years.  some days, it does feel that way.  but most days, i can find it in me to ramble.  ramble in ways people actually want to pay attention to, not always, but ramble nonetheless.  to quote my friend eleni, who doesn't trust quiet people, in response to my claim 'but i'm quiet,' told me "okay, but.... no."

apparently, she's not wrong.

even so, 5 days a week is definitely not happening around here anymore, in case you haven't noticed.  even if i have enough to say, i just can't keep up the pace consistently.  more work responsibilities, more life responsibilities, it's tough.  tough to give my of-course-always-totally-hilarious post ideas the attention they deserve.  so i've definitely cut back a lot.  now don't start thinking that i want to cut back completely - i don't.  i just want to change it up a little.  yes, yes, i know, i hate change.  but it won't be a monumental change.  just going to attempt some longer posts just a little less often.  say one or two (maybe 3 but let's not get crazy) posts per week.  i figure if i can't keep up with reading someone else's blog 4 or 5 days a week, certainly no one can keep up with mine either.

i'll still talk about all my favorite topics (generally summed up as 'the laughably absurd tasks of adulting'; you know, organizing, finances, relationships, general nonsense and the occasional cupcake made out of booze.)  you'll just notice some changes to the menu bar up top and some longer posts, and my name in your reader popping up less often.

all this to say, i have no plans on going anywhere and hopefully you don't either.  just going to try to change up the format a little.  longer posts, more substance, less often.  and an infinite number of hawkeye photos, because,

Choose Your Own Adventure [Link Up]

April 2, 2015

it's that time again - link up day is here.  how did you fare in march?  remember the prompt for march was 'relationships.'

how i did:
(1) more walks for hawkeye.  check.  when the weather cooperated, we went to the park and the corner bar.  what?  she loves the bar, she gets a stool and everything.
(2) get my friends out for their birthdays that were missed in february.  check.  i actually got them both out on the same day, lunch and dinner!
(3) continue helping mom declutter.  negative.  some things came up at my dad's office so i had to help over there for 2 weekends.  hopefully we can weed more things out this month and if not, well i'm watching the dogs again over memorial day and i'll just start tossing things.  they won't miss what they don't even know is there.
(4) something nice for john.  check.  made him homemade pasta, meatballs and marinara sauce (his favorite.)  but i did not send another care package because he had weekends off and... drum roll... as of yesterday.... he's home!  the job out there isn't finished but since he worked so hard they rewarded him when a job opened close to home.  no more 2 hours away, no more rented apartment out there.  woo!

the theme for april is 'finances.'  just in time for tax season, oh joy.  my goals?
1. continue on my spending frost, at least until vegas.
2. try to keep a cap on the vegas spending.  i'm going to generally sketch out each day and guesstimate, and try to stick with that number.
3. cut down more on vegas costs by being frugal with the stuff that doesn't matter.  like bringing my own brita water bottle and snacks.
4. try not to go too crazy on april 27 - hawkeye's 6th birthday!  no promises though.  this is, like, an almost unattainable goal.  taco bell fiesta with toys and treats and everything her royal highness loves?  bound to be pricey.

so tell me all about how you did and what you're planning for april.

general guidelines:
1) if you want, follow your hosts not entirely perfect, life according to steph, and keeping up with ashley and cody.  (i like twitter, that way i can follow you back and tweet you encouragement throughout the challenge.)
2) link up your post about your results below for the month - we want to hear all about what you did, how you fared, what resources you used, what you'd recommend to others, etc.
3) please link to your actual post about your results.  links not having to do with the challenge will be deleted.
4) feel free to use this button, created by the lovely sarah at venus trapped in mars.

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