Happy Chrismahanukwanzakah!!

Merry Christmas!
Happy Hanukkah!
Happy Kwanza!
Happy Festivus!

Whatever you celebrate remember one thing this is so much more fun 
when you don't take yourself too seriously!


Christmas with the Obamas

I have loved Michelle Obama's style since I first saw her on TV campaigning with Barack. She has such an effortless style and always looks appropriate for whatever situation she finds herself in. I also love her down-to-Earth attitude that she has held on to even thought her husband is considered to be the most powerful man in the world.

So, when HGTV announced that they would continue their Christmas at the White House special this year I was very much looking forward to seeing how The First Lady would infuse her great style into the decorations. And then, when she announced the theme as "Simple Gifts" I knew it was going to be great. And boy is it ever! From what I saw on the special the White House looks amazing! 

The simple branches with crystals made to look like ice diffuses the light and makes this hallway look beautiful!

The Blue Room tree is as grand as ever and filled with ornaments made by students at the Savannah College of Art and Design.

The ornaments represent each of the 50 states and are made of organic cloth. What a great way to fit the theme of Simple Gifts!

The annual White House gingerbread house goes above and beyond this year! It has holes cut into the facade and rooms in the house were meticulously created, complete with electricity! There is even a tiny Bo out front. Too cute!

Needless to say I would love to visit the White House at Christmas time. It looks like it is such a magical place at this time of year! I can't imagine what it is like living in the space and getting to enjoy it every day. 

Merry Christmas ya'll!


Friday Funny

Keeping Up With Kelly & Co

I love the E*Trade Baby commercials! I think they are hilarious! I came upon this new one that I have never seen great!


bad blogger

Again with the month long absence from the blog. Ugh! I have become the worst blogger lately!

But...not to is over and so I have more time. For a bit. A little under one month to be exact. 

On the school front, I have successfully completed my first semester of graduate school with flying colors! All A's for me! One of my papers even landed on a list of the best in the class in my International Development Education class! If any of you out there want to read a paper about Child Soldier's just let me know. one? Yeah, that's what I thought. 

One positive of an ever changing school schedule is an ever changing work schedule. My new work schedule now includes two days that allow me to sleep in until a whopping 7am! It is so sad that I consider 7am sleeping in these days. Oh how I wish for the days as an undergrad. Sleeping until noon, going to the elementary art methods class (yes, we made paper mache puppets in that class, don't judge me) at 1pm, and then lounging around and doing nothing for the rest of the day. Oh to be young again!

Oh yeah and big news! I was officially nominated for the Peace Corps! All that is in my way is the medical and legal clearances. Woo hoo! I am on my way. My recruiter said that I might not know where I'm going until two months before I leave. Scary but exciting at the same time! 

I'll try to keep it going here on the ol' blog. Remember last month when I promised that same thing. This time will be different. Really. 


missing you...five years later

We miss... 

your smile.
your laugh.
your voice.
your ever changing hair color.
your crazy stories.
your attitude, even when it was bad.
you being able to see your children.
you seeing Tristan's smile.
you seeing Alexa dance.
you at school plays.
you at the family parties.
you at Thanksgiving.
you at Christmas.
you at birthdays.
seeing you these last five years.

We know you can see us from wherever you are. 
We can feel you on special days.
You let us know you are here in your own special way. 

We miss a lot of things about you.
But, put simply, we miss you Kierra.


Friday Funny

Keeping Up With Kelly & Co

It's Friday! That means it's time for the Friday Funny! 
To play along, head on over to Keeping up with Kelly and Co..

This came up on my iPod yesterday and I was literally laughing out loud and singing at the same time. Hard to do but definitely possible! 

Enjoy Adam Sandler and the amazingness of Lunch Lady Land!



At Florida State we are lucky enough to have a beautiful lakefront park that is free for student use, the FSU Reservation. Or, as the cool kids call it, The Rez.
The park is great and there are so many activities students can do for FREE! 
You know us college kids love the word FREE!

Since starting grad. school, my friends and I have made it a habit to go kayaking as much as possible, usually every weekend. It is the perfect thing for getting some relaxation in. Leisurely paddling through the water and pushing all the work and reading that needs to be done out of your mind is the best!

One part of the lake is full of cypress trees and the water flows through them like a road. 
So beautiful and quiet.

The best part is when you stop paddling and just float, lean back, and enjoy the sun.

If you've never gone kayaking I highly recommend it! So relaxing and a great work out to boot!


the choir

I have an new TV obsession.
The Choir on BBC America.

I recently saw The Choir on my On Demand menu and was curios. What choir? Who's choir?

Well it's Gareth Malone's choir and the show is great!

Gareth Malone is a choir master that travels England and creates choirs from nothing. He turns these groups of people into amazing choirs within only a few months. In the episodes I have seen so far, he creates a boys choir at a school that is obsessed with sports and a community choir in a down and out town that needs something to bring them together.

The show touches on some individual stories within the choirs and is very touching. It is amazing to see what he does with these seemingly ordinary people that never ever thought of singing. 

Check out the video below for The Choir!


plugging along

My life is plugging along. And that is all. Plugging. Work. School. Work. School

There is some sprinkling of fun during the weekend but that is in between writing papers and creating PowerPoint presentations. Exciting and riveting right? Didn't think so.

I have done some fun things lately. And by lately I mean within the last month. 'Cause remember that whole I vow to post more thing.... yeah it's not really happening. 
Help! Grad. school is swallowing my life!

Now...some fun things....

  • I saw The Town. Great movie! Boston bank robbers says it all. Ben Affleck stars in it and he wrote and directed it. He did a great job! By the end of the movie you are rooting for the bad guys. Pretty funny too, even if it wasn't meant to be. 
  • I also saw The Social Network. Another pretty good one. Although, it does make Mark Zuckerberg (creator of Facebook) look like a completely egotistical jerk. He pretty much abandons his  best friend and business partner and follows the money. Not nice, Mark, not nice at all. 
  • Last weekend was the Experience Asia Festival here in Tallahassee. Basically, I go for the food! I hadn't had Indian food in a very, very long time so I was definitely excited to get my hands on some chicken tika masala and naan bread. It was glorious! I could probably eat chicken tika all day everyday and never get tired of it.
  •  I registered for spring semester and am excited to only have class one day a week! Woo hoo! I can now (in January) come home from work and not have to rush back out to go to class three days a week. Much less hectic! I like it! And, bonus, I can start going to the gym more. I was going everyday until school took over my life.
  • Super exciting is the fact that Florida State is playing some great football this year! And, to top it off, the Gators LOST! TWICE! As you know, a Florida State fan roots for anyone playing the Gators.
Ok, for real this time, I promise to post more. Maybe. We'll see. 


back from the dead

I am back from the dead! 

So we just won't talk about the fact that I took a big 'ol giant break from blogging.

I am back and I missed writing so I am excited to get back at it.

So, since I last graced you with my presence I have of course come back from NYC. 
I so wish I had still been in New York this whole time! 
Sadly I have not. I have started grad. school! 
And I landed a full time job! Hence the world's longest bloggy break. 
Needless to say my life has been a little crazy and busy!

I am really loving grad. school so far. I'm working towards my degree in the international education development field. Basically we are learning to save the world one child at a time. My degree will eventually include a 2-year stint in the Peace Corps. As a matter of fact I turned in my application for the Peace Corps last week! Exciting!

Goodness it feels good to be back!


i don't want to brag but....

I've been too busy to blog because I'm hanging out  here.

And eating these.

I'll have a full recap of the week over the weekend. 



In a few weeks I am moving back to Tallahassee for graduate school.
This means that I need to decorate my room!
I love decorating but I'm really bad about making decisions and visualizing.

I already bought my furniture.
It is a simple, white, wood bed with matching white night stands and white desk and chair.
It is on the cusp of shabby chic without the sanding. 
I love the simplicity of white and the versatility that it can provide.

I am now in search of bedding.

I think I have narrowed it down to three choices.

This is from Target in the Liberty of London Collection.
I enjoy the whimsical-ness of this I just don't know about the orange.

Another option is

This is also from Target in the Dwell Studio Collection.
This is my favorite. I love the flower patterns and I think it will look great with white furniture.

My last choice is

This is from Pottery Barn and it is on sale.
I don't know about the pattern. Is it too busy? It is bright which I like.

And to throw more options in the mix I bought this wall decal to put in the room.

Talk amongst yourselves :)


heart break

We found Sophie! 
She is now safe and sound!

I came home last night and my dog is missing.

I am heartbroken.


it's the little things in life

It's been crazy at work lately (we are down a staff member), I'm going to the gym everyday (yay me!), and I'm trying to prepare for grad. school. 
Needless to say, I look forward to any funny or stressless moment I can come across.

There are a few things that have put a smile on my face lately.

1. This new Kia commercial.

Rapping hamsters get me everytime!

2. The new fruit smoothies at McDonald's.

The wild berry flavor is especially good!

Love her. Love this.

Hope ya'll have less going on than me! 


leavin' on a jet plane

I got sucked into a marathon of The City tonight.

NYC is neck and neck with London as my favorite city on Earth.
The fact that you can do anything you want, anytime you want is amazing!

The marathon got me excited about my VACATION IN NYC that is coming up in less than a month!

One of my greatest friends moved up there after college and I couldn't wait to go and visit her. 
I'll be there for a week which is soooooo exciting!

Instead of staying in a hotel, I rented this beautiful apartment for the week.

I found this rental on
They have great apartments all over the city and they have great rates. 
This apartment was actually less than a three star hotel and it's four blocks from Times Square!  

I 've been to NYC a few times before so I am looking forward to having a (new) native New Yorker with me. I want to do all the non-touristy things. 

I want to do this

I also want to explore the other side of this bridge!

I am so excited about this trip! So much so that I am counting down like a small chid. 

Do you guys have a favorite sight in NYC? I am totally up for suggestions! 


Born on the 4th of july

The 4th of July got rained our here in my little corner of Florida.
It rained for the entire long weekend which put the brakes on a lot of celebrations and some of the fireworks got rained out.

But....the rain did not stop me from seeing REO Speedwagon and Pat Benatar in concert!!

I love me some classic rock, being my parent's daughter and all. 
I was raised on the stuff and boy am I thankful for it! 
They both put on a great show!

(I unfortunately had no idea that my camera was dead when I got there. :( Pictures courtesy of 

Rockin' with the Wagon!

She's still got it!


Wishful Wednesday - Style

I am jumping on the bandwagon of Wishful Wednesday. 

The topic for this week is style. 

If I could pick any store as my personal closet I would choose Banana Republic. 

I love their classic yet modern style and the timeless silhouettes.    

Their dresses are especially swoon worthy.

Love it!

You can play along too! Head over to The Seattle Smith's!

Happy Wednesday to the blogosphere! 


long time no blog

So...what's the big, new, exciting, development in my life? Netflix. 
That's how not so exciting my life has been lately. 

We (the 'rents and I) recently broke down and bought a Wii.
We love it! 

I am eyeing this.

I'm patiently waiting on a good sale.
We all know how I love a good deal!

But, back to Netflix. You can watch movies instantly on your t.v. through your Wii!
I love it! The instant movies come free with whichever subscription you paid for. They aren't new releases but there is still a pretty good selection.
So, you can still watch movies while your waiting on the snail mail.

 This was first in my queue.

I really enjoyed it. I watched it win all those awards at the Oscars and I wondered what all the hype was about. I understand now. The movie is very suspenseful and
keeps your interest the whole time. 
I never felt myself getting bored. I also really liked the way it was filmed. Some parts of the movie were filmed with handheld cameras which gave it a really cool feel. Even if you're not a fan of war movies youshould check this one out. 


words to live by

Can I start this post by saying....OMG I haven't blogged in almost a month! Bad blogger! I would say I have a good reason for this but I don't. I can't even make up a good one.

Lately I have spent an inordinate amount of time in the deep South. Last weekend I spent a great weekend with a bunch of great ladies at our favorite horse ranch in Georgia. And, the weekend before I spent in South Carolina at the NASCAR race in Darlington.

Along the way I saw a billboard after my own heart. This road sign simply stated: "Country Cookin' Makes You Good Lookin'" Amen sister, amen! I have no idea what was being advertised but this slogan shall stay with me forever. It will now be my sole excuse for eating all the Southern food I would like.

That brought up all the other Southern words to live by. For example, "Bless your heart." To the          un-expecting Yankee this seems like a lovely sympathetic term. In reality it is never a good thing. For those not familiar, "Bless your heart" is something you don't want to hear said about you. This phrase is what we polite southern belles say when we really want to say something very un-lady like. A soccer mom steals your parking spot at the mall? You reply, "Bless her heart." Your boyfriend thinks that a vacuum cleaner is a great birthday gift? Your friends respond, "Bless his heart." You see, we actually mean the complete opposite.

And now, courtesy of, a tutorial on how to use Southern phrases.


Things You'll Need:

  • Extra Time

  1. Step1

    "Butter my butt, and call me a biscuit!" It's a clear way to say you are knocked out of your britches with a new tidbit of knowledge.

    "It made me as ill as a hornet." You were so mad, you just didn't know what to do.

    "If that don't put pepper in the gumbo."

    "Well, slap my head and call me silly."

    "Tie me to an anthill and fill my ears with jam."

  2. Step2

    "Bless her/his heart."

    "Do tell."

    "My cow died last night, so I don't need your bull."

    "I do declare."

    "Well, shut my mouth."

  3. Step3

    "She's resting in peace in the marble orchard." (You can add "Bless her heart.")

    "He's fixin' to meet his Maker."

  4. Step4
    STUPID, UGLY AND CLUMSY PEOPLE (there must be a lot around here because there are many ways to imply such things) Since we don't usually call people stupid, ugly and clumsy - follow each of these phrases with, "Bless his/her heart"

    "He looks like something the dog's been keeping under the porch."

    "She's so ugly, she could haunt a house."

    "He's acting crazier than a sprayed roach."

    "She's two sandwiches shy of a good picnic."

    "If brains were dynamite, he couldn't blow his nose."

    "He's as useful as a pogo stick in quicksand."

    "She needs some fries to go with that shake."

    "Like a bump on the log."

    "She's so clumsy, she could trip on a cordless phone."

    Do you have a favorite phrase/saying/slang?


a slice of old Florida

I have always been intrigued by old Florida. I'm a Floridian (born and raised) and I love the magic that Florida holds for non-Floridians. The promise of endless sunshine, gorgeous beaches, the happiest place on Earth (Disney World, of course!).

But, there is a forgotten piece of old Florida that out ranks all of this for me.  Just north of Tampa on US 19 sits a relic of Florida that is still standing tall. Weeki Wachee Springs is slice of nostalgia that has been preserved for future generations. Hailed as the world's only city of live mermaids, it beckons tourists away from the all mighty mouse. It promises them a wonderful, if not gimmicky, show full of magic and sights beyond belief. Since 1946 tourists have been coming to Weeki Wachee to marvel at the beautiful mermaids that seem to effortlessly dance without the need for air in the crystal clear spring. A spectacle and a must see for sure!

The draw of old Florida and the magic of such a place is what drew me into my current read, Swim to Me. The book tells the story of a 16-year-old girl who leaves her home in the Bronx for the sunny promise of Florida. After her father walks out on her family, she feels as though she must get out and make a better life for herself. Weeki Wachee seems like the perfect place to do just that after visiting the park on a family vacation the year before. She auditions at Weeki Wachee and gets the job. Now, how will she deal with her new found stardom and what will happen when her family suddenly reunites in a most feared twist of fate? This book is not the most substantial book but it is a good read none the less. I would recommend this for a long drive or a day at the beach. It left me with dreams of old Florida and I am now planning a trip to Weeki Wachee as soon as possible!