Tuesday, November 25, 2008

New Blog Addiction

I don't have much for you today, people.  Sorry.  It's Wednesday, eh em, "Friday," and I'm heading home to the 757(ish) for like 3 Thanksgiving dinners.  (Welcome to MY family!)  I plan on having some pumpkin pie before I leave work today.

I want to pass along the latest blog I've added to my "check daily" tab.  It's the best thing I've discovered since "Brazen Careerist."

Genius!  It's "I Will Teach You to be Rich."  Full of super tips for saving money!  And it's snarky, I like that in a blog.

A lot of it is rather simple, yet ambitious for someone like me who is just horrible with money.  I'm liking it!  And I'm TRYING to pull it together.  This economy is really starting to freak me out - and I have this little "Big Day" event coming up in, oh, I don't know, 10 months or so, that I need to budget for.

Speaking of "Big Day" stuff... I'm pumped because when I go home this weekend, Mom, Granny and I are going to look at possible places!  I'm really hoping to get this thing nailed down!

Since I don't have any pictures or videos to share with you - and because the infamous proposal story is now off the first page (waaa!) here you go, a special treat:

My awesomely gorgeous, incredibly smart and thoughtful, lest I not forget hilarious fiance:


This picture made my night!  Stacia put it up on her Facebook and when I was checking randomly overnight, I saw it.

When your day to day life keeps you about 1,200 miles apart - little things like new pictures - go a long way.

I hope he doesn't mind me putting this funny pic of him up!

Babe - muah!  I hope you know how THANKFUL I am for you!

Purple Tuesday

Guess I never made it back here yesterday, sorry about that.  I got out of work early, which was super.  And I went home and paid bills, which sucked.  :(

Am I the only one who thinks "cereal" every time I hear "credit crunch"?

Today I'm having a 1/2 good  hair day.  Not the kind where your hair looks good half of the day, but the kind in which literally half of my hair looks good.  Left side - good.  Nice part, good volume, all going in the same direction.  Right side - hmmm... maybe it's artsy?  I don't know.

It's okay, though because there are little things to be thankful for today.  For instance:

OctNov08 054 

Someone left this magazine at the mailbox area in my apartment building.  Sans address label which means it was totally up for adoption!

So, I grabbed it.  And I loved the article Kenny wrote!  Yes, I said Kenny wrote.  Tracy, this is for you!

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Another random, little thing I'm happy for today is 100 calorie packs.  I have loved these since the early days in 2005 when I was on Weight Watchers and the jokes of oreos were awesome to me.

These two are my current favorites.  I eat them back to back.  Salty, then sweet.  Yum.

Now, finally... I get to the part of this post that lives up to the title. (I hate titles - too much pressure - but it looks stupid when my blogs are imported into Facebook and they don't have titles, so whatev.)

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I am thankful for my purple fuzzy socks.  I love this kind of socks (for socks). 

I started getting them for Christmas a few years ago, and I usually get a couple more pair each year.  They are so cozy and comfortable! 

They look kind of pink in this picture, but trust me, they're really purple.  And yes, I'm walking around in my socks at work.  That's just how I roll.

I only wear shoes long enough to get to my desk, then I take them off - and don't put them back on until it's time for the "dayside" people to arrive.  It'll be our little secret, mmkay?

Now - more purple:

OctNov08 056I used my purple pen to trace over the coffee cups on this cup.  I'm quite proud of my little work of art!

These cups always make me remember back when I was working at WSLS in Roanoke and I would stop by Mill Mountain Coffee & Tea on my way to work, and they had these cups.

I would drink my latte - then spend the back half of the morning meeting coloring in the coffee cups!  (and listening and pitching awesome story ideas, too, of course!)

Also - since I never got around to it yesterday, a big THANK YOU from Brokaw to Ben & Cris - for sending him two little rawhide bones.  He loves these!  And so do the books on my bottom bookshelves. Shout out for such a nice surprise!

I got him to do a couple of tricks to say THANK YOU:

And then, we had a little more fun: 

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Monday, Monday

Bah dah dah dah dah dah.  The best thing about this Monday is that it's kind of Wednesday because I'm off Thursday and Friday for Thanksgiving.  All hail to the chief holiday!  I did not bow down to the commercial man this weekend and cave into the Christmas decorating.  Wahoo! 

I slept A LOT over the weekend.  Mmmm.  I love sleep!  I'm all caught up on The Office and Grey's Anatomy.  I am loving The Office, but I'm growing more and more annoyed by Grey's and thinking it's kind of becoming a waste of my time.  I think Grey's glory days may be over.

More later.  I must work now.

Saturday, November 22, 2008


I broke my blog streak yesterday, sorry folks.

After work, Malika and I went to check out the newly re-opened National Museum of American History and it was FAB.  Highly recommend it.  A must-see in DC!  It has always been one of my favorites.  I like American history the best!  How patriotic, yet horribly self-centered of me, yes?

I slept for about 14 hours (the lovely Friday usual catch-up from the week) and it was great.  This morning, I'm catching up on The Office and snuggling with my doggie.  Good times.

IT SNOWED YESTERDAY, what in the world???  This is totally throwing me off!  I have a confession to make.  I am on the verge of rebelling.  I am from the "old school" when it comes to holidays.  I really, really LOVE Thanksgiving - I mean how can you argue with a holiday that is about eating?  And I have always had a policy of putting off all things "Christmas" until after Thanksgiving.  I never put up any deocrations until after Thanksgiving or listen to "Christmas" music until after Thanksgiving...

But just now, I signed on to itunes to look for songs to make a new work-out mix (I need some motivation!) and I see Harry Connick Jr.'s new album is only $7.99!!!!! What???? Awesome price.  Then I see that Enya has a holiday album out this year too?

Oh!  I'm tempted to break my own rules!  What to do???

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

I'm Alive and Well


It changes everything, right?  I struggle with perspective.  Because just when I think I get it, I say or do something that clearly indicates that I don't get it at all. 

I have this song on repeat and I love it so much.  First of all, it's Kenny (hello!).  And Dave Matthews doesn't hurt.  But I really like the lyrics and the message here:

So damn easy to say that life’s so hard
Everybody’s got their share of battle scars
As for me I’d like to think my lucky stars that
I’m alive, and well

It’d be easy to add up all the pain
And all the dreams you set and watch go up in flames
Dwell on the wreckage as it smolders in the rain
But not me, I’m alive

And today you know that’s good enough for me
Breathing in and out is a blessing can’t you see
Today is the first day of the rest of my life
And I’m alive, and well
I’m alive, and well

Stars are dancin’ on the water here tonight
It’s good for the soul, and there’s not a sole in sight
But this motors caught it wind and brought me back to life
Now I’m alive, and well

And today you know that’s good enough for me
Breathing in and out is a blessing can’t you see
Today is the first day of the rest of my life
Now I’m alive, and well
Yeah I’m alive, and well

In other news... I received a notice from my apartment building management that I am apparently not allowed to sublet my apartment out for Barack Obama's inauguration.  Darn it!  Actually, I wasn't planning on doing that anyway.  Although, I don't see how I'm going to be able to get home from work that day.  They're expecting 4 million people to be in DC.  I'm thinking that may be a challenging commute...

One more thing I'd like to mention - Hugh Jackman - Sexiest Man Alive?  Now, I must admit, he's awesomely sexy, but I repeat - again - there is no reason Matthew  McConaughey should ever be de-throned from that title.  I think they should make a couple of things like Supreme Court Justice Terms. You know - until death.  Kenny Chesney should always be Entertainer of the Year.  Matthew McConaughey should always be Sexiest Man Alive.  That's all I'm sayin'.

I'm kind of enjoying this

I have a break between live shots this morning, so I'm going to bang out another random blog!  Thanks for your comments! :)

Let me begin by saying I overslept last night.  This NEVER happens because my sweet fiance calls me each night at 11pm to wake me up.  I missed his call.  My phone was on silent.  I put it on silent at work and I guess I never turned it back up.  Weird.  I don't usually do things out of habit.  So YEAH - apparently I do wake up "naturally" ABOUT AN HOUR AND A HALF LATER.  Brokaw was in my face.  Wouldn't go away.  He had to pee so bad!!  I took him outside and he literally peed on the side of the apartment building, haha!!

Today President Bush is going to dedicate the National Museum of American History.  It's re-opening after being closed for 2 years for rennovations.  I am so excited about this!  The American History Museum is my ultimate favorite museum in Washington and I can't wait to go!  Maybe I'll check it out this weekend if it's not 10 degrees outside.  We'll see.

Oh, interesting article in today's USA Today.  It seems we were overpraised as children and now we expect too much.  I certainly did not feel "over" praised as a child, but I can relate to that sense of "I won't fail at anything."  Your thoughts?

Can I vent for a second?  I'm really REALLY over the term "grill" when it comes to talking about Congressional hearings.  Okay?  Seriously.  Grilled.  Grilled chicken, yes.  Grilled salmon, sure.  Grilled just about anything else, yes, sign me up.  But grilled auto CEOs?  No thanks.  This is the executive producer in me.  I get really, really over words in "news speak" when they are overused and especially when they're just stupid.  While I'm at it:  Just as much as I need news writers to stop using "grilled" for whoever is in the "hot seat" (I also hate that one) at said Congressional hearing, I need Senators to stop using medical metaphors.

I don't know how many times during yesterday's Senate Banking hearing I heard terms like "hemorraging", "life support," "stop the bleeding," etc. etc. etc.  STOP.

I'm watching Morning Joe right now and I want to jump through the screen and take their Venti Starbucks cups and drink whatever is in them because I'm certain, it's yummy.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008



Today my middle nephew, Colby, is 16 years old!

He will be driving a truck soon.

That's crazy!  I remember when he was born.  I was in middle school.  I went to see him when he was a wee little baby.  The first time I saw him, he was in a swing.  I couldn't believe he had BROWN HAIR!

He is such a handsome fella now.  And courteous and athletic, too!


Happy Birhtday, Colbster.  I love you.



Thanks to all of you who read and commented on Steel Magnolias.  How fun!  And you youngsters who haven't seen it - rent it.  Now.  It's fab.

I'm trying to get into the whole blog every day thing... I don't know... the problem is, when I do that, you get this randomness.  You like?  I feel like I like that when I read other people's blogs - but I feel like my own randomness is... weird.

For example, here is my musing for today:

Real Simple.  I LOVE this magazine.  I have tried stopping my subscription several times, but like highlighting my hair - I always go back.  I just got my new one.  Can't wait to dive in.  I see lots of Red and Baby Blue, which I think are the perfect Christmas colors.  I'm starting to think about being open to the idea of the Holidays approaching.  That whole "summer is over" denial thing is starting to wear off.  I wore an actual coat to work today!  And I saw a local news reporter doing a "they're getting ready for snow!" live shot.  Goodness.

The first thing I have to do is tear out all of the annoying stuff from the magazine.  You know, the 47 cards trying to get you to subscribe (um, hello? already do.  thanks.) or trying to get you to send someone else a subscription.  Those get thrown out.  And anything else that is made of that cardstock.  I hate that stuff.  Keeps me from flipping happily through my magazine,  ya know?

So, I'm looking forward to gutting it, reading it, and most of all - trying new recipes!  Confession:  I keep my Real Simple magazines.  How very not "Real Simple" of me!




Sunday, November 16, 2008

Steel Magnolias

I just finished some cheesy grits.  Instant.  Mmm.   Needed a slice of butter, though.  Speaking of all things southern...

This weekend, Becky came over for a viewing of one of the best movies of all time, Steel Magnolias.  There are only a handful of movies I can quote and this is one of them.  We watched it with subtitles, altough accidental, that ended up being fun!

Let's review some of the best lines from Steel Magnolias:

"Nobody move!!"

"Shelby, drink your juice."

"In a good shoe, I wear a size six, but a seven feels so good, I buy a size eight."

"Sammy Wayne Desoto, what is this in my Frigidaire?"

"Miss Truvy, I promise that my personal tragedy will not interfere with my ability to do good hair."

Oh, there are too many to post here!  What are yours?

Friday, November 14, 2008

Busy, Busy Friday

I just realized I didn't blog this morning!  We had a very busy morning - with the Bush financial summit about to get underway and Obama apparently thinking of Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State...  But... I feel obligated to throw something out here after my awesome week of faithful blogging!

Let's see... what have I got for you...

Um - I feel COMPLETELY overwhelmed by thoughts about this wedding.  I have spent way too many hours googling things this week! 

My brain cache needs to be CLEARED.  Too many images.  Gowns.  Invitations.  Flowers.  Favors.  Bridesmaid dresses.  Cakes.  Oh.  My.  Goodness.  There are TOO MANY CHOICES.  There is NOT ENOUGH MONEY.

I am having to constantly remind myself that the really important parts of that day... are going to be the parts that don't actually COST a thing.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I miss my Papa

November 13th.  It's just one of those days I mark.  I can't think November 13th or write the date without thinking about my Papa Tom.

He died 5 years ago today.  I can't believe it's been that long!  I miss him SO much.  He was such a great Papa.  I miss his smile and his big belly laugh and all of the funny and loving and caring things he did.  I feel him with me, though.  When I look at the ring on my finger, I picture a young Papa Tom, knealing on the sidewalk in Downtown Danville asking my Granny to marry him.  What an honor it is to wear this ring!

Okay, enough of that.

Let's discuss how I need to pay attention to what's happening in the world.  Not the news, no, I'm completely in the loop on that.  I can tell you all kinds of economic details about the "bailout" or the "rescue package" - depending how you like the nounage.  Or the transition and who is being talked about for what jobs...How is that??  And yet, I totally miss the CMAs? 

I seriously need a cultural advisor. 

Of course my Kenny took home Entertainer of the Year - for the 4th time!!

It makes me long for summertime... can't wait for at least January or February when we can get his schedule and buy tickets.  I am so there.  I also want the new Sugarland CD some kinda bad.

Oh!  I did make it to the gym yesterday.  But I just ate cheesecake for breakfast... one thing at a time.

Quickly - before I go - because I hate blogging without pictures, it feels so... empty.

The only reason I'm still on MySpace is to stay in touch with my little brother.  I think MySpace and Facebook are like Diet Pepsi and Diet Coke.  MySpace and Pepsi are old.  Boo.  Stinky.  Not my first choice, but eh, okay, if I have to and that's all there is... Diet Coke and Facebook are my first choices, hands down.

Now, pictures from my brother's myspace page.  I'm glad we got him that camera and that he has a myspace (even though life sure would be a lot easier if he would migrate to Facebook already!) because I love to see his adventures.  He's in the Army - in Germany right now.  It looks like he's having a great time.


German Pro Ice Hockey, cool!


And he went to Prague!  Sweet!  It is awesome the things he is getting to see and do.

I'm so proud of my little bro.  Not only of his service to our country but also for being the guy who takes a picture like this.

I can see his face lighting up with the idea, then making his friend take it, then immediately looking at it in the camera, proudly.

Classic.  Nice form, Chris.

Get in Shape, Girl!

Remember those?  Did you have that?  I did. The tape with the jump rope.  I didn't ever really do it. (shocker)

3 Days in a row!  A blog turkey.  Please send me a gold star.  Thanks.

I really need Barack Obama to stop going to the gym, mmkay?  He's making me feel really, really guilty.  I mean, if this guy can get up the day after election night, on like 2 hours of sleep (maybe) then that means I can probably go.  Ugh!!

I forgot to go to the gym yesterday.  Had a bag packed.  Ipod was charged.  Then, out of habit, after work, I just got in my car to go home.  Now, I'm back here at the office and that stupid gym bag is staring at me and I'm thinking about how Barack has probably already lifted weights and played basketball, in between intelligence briefings and picking his Cabinet members.  Darn it.  He's too perfect. 

I do need to go.  I mean, seriously, there's a gym at the office.  One in my apartment building.  And I can also go at the Press Club, which is on my way home.  Am I a loser, or what?  I'm going today!  I need to stop being in denial about that 1/2 marathon I'm supposed to run in March, or I'll be in the line the night before to change my registration to the 8K!  Haha.

But, my tummy hurts... because I've had one too many "fun" size snickers.  I swear the candy pumpkin at work is out to get me.  Why?  Why me?

Monday, November 10, 2008


First and foremost, HAPPY VETERANS DAY!!  Thank you to all of you who have served.  I am very proud of my dad and my brother.  Give a vet a hug today.

I watched live yesterday as President-Elect Obama and Michelle Obama visited the White House, hosted by President Bush and First Lady Laura Bush.  I was FASCINATED.  Wow!  History, baby!

I enjoy watching the little things.  How Obama remarked "You both look autumnal," to Michelle and Laura, referrring to their dresses. (A clear shout-out to you, Christin!)  I loved the body language.  Bush waves, then Obama.  Obama's hand on Bush's back as they entered the White House.  Bush's hand on Obama's back as they entered the Oval Office.

It's so fascinating!  I'm obsessed.  I watched it all again for our story this morning.  So cool.

Okay, how tall is Michelle Obama, seriously!  She must have been really uncomfortable in that limosine. 

Moving on... I was wandering aimlessly around Target yesterday.  Yup.  Really.  I couldn't remember why I was there.  It's sad... but I think sometimes I'm just pulled there by some unnamed force... But I ended up getting a card and some Burt's Bees chapstick, so that's good.  Oh!  And I picked up a pound of Starbucks Winter Blend. Um.... YEAH.  Love it.  Small print: This is in not an endorsement of Winter in any way, shape or form.  I'm still anti-Winter.  I just like the coffee.  It may be as simple as I'm flavored-coffee'd out.  I dunno.  Does that ever happen to you?

I leave you with a picture of my sweet Mr. Puggles.  I have no doubt, this is what he's doing right now at this very moment:

OctNov08 042 

I have to switch the cushions back and forth because God forbid Brokaw lay on the other side!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Well folks, I'm back.  You're just going to have to budget time into your day to read my blog.  Who knows how long it will last, but at least for now, I'm into it.

My lead blog story today is my FIANCE'S (I'm still not over that word) birthday.  Yep.  My Michael gets a little older today.  I wish more than anything I could be there with him to celebrate.  Sigh.  My thoughts and my heart are with him today, though.


Dana's Pics 006 

This picture is from his birthday, last year.  It's the same picture that's in a frame on my desk at work.  What a great guy.  I seriously won the lottery on this one.  7 weeks until I see those beautiful blue eyes, but who's counting?

Now that we're all in agreement about how wonderful he is, go buy him a gift!

In other news (wink)...  I think I'm going to have to at least consider coming out of "winter is approaching" denial.  Here's why:  I am wearing boots.  And a winter coat. (Side note:  Have you ever heard that some people get stuck in their senior year of high school, fashion wise?  I'm still wearing a pea coat, I hope that's okay.  If it's not, and I'm stuck in 1997, will someone please let me know?  Thanks.)  And I just ate oatmeal.  So, yeah, I guess winter is actually coming.  Boo on that.

I had a nice, relaxing weekend.  I had a fabulous lunch at Lebanese Taverna Saturday with Becky.  Love her.  Love hearing her stories.  Love laughing with her!  So glad to have her as a friend.  Then I ordered pizza and watched Baby Mama, which I actually didn't think was as funny as I was hoping it would be.

Sunday night, I went to Catacombs at Ebenezer's to see a baptism.  Charged me up!  Nothing makes me more excited about my God than new life!!  So glad I was there.  I am amazed at what He is doing.  So excited to be a part of it. 

Saturday, November 8, 2008


(Shout out to Nikole for the title, I totally stole that!)  

It's been like 5 days since Election Day and I still can't believe it's actually over.  But I know it is, because the level of my work e-mail has dropped off significantly.  So much so, that yesterday when I didn't get an email for 20 minutes, I restarted my blackberry because I thought something was wrong!  I was getting hundreds of campaign emails daily.  I feel so lonely now!  I always loved the ones in my inbox that looked like they were actually from "John and Cindy" or "Sarah" or "Barack."  I miss my email buddies!

I spent so much time and energy covering the '08 Campaign that the day after was kind of depressing!  A let down.  Kind of like the day after Christmas.  There's a huge buildup, then a giant exhale, then... nothing.  It's weird.

From the snows of New Hampshire for the first primary... to Hillary's never-ending run, to my sweet Huckadoodle... to the conventions... and the debates... and finally election night in Phoenix... I had a blast covering this historic race!  I learned so much about how politics and democracy work.  I learned so much about how my business works - the good and the bad.  I gained great respect for my co-workers.  I memorized policies and plans and electoral college votes and lots of random trivia about the candidates, their wives, their past votes.  I am so blessed that I got to be here, in this time, in this moment in history, wow!

Sometimes, I think - I am one lucky girl, but no, that's not it.  It's not really luck.  I've worked really, really hard to get here.  And I'm really, really blessed.  I pray for more opportunities like this in the future.  These are the things that make me LOVE what I do.  Being an eyewitness to history!  It doesn't get any better than that, especially for a nerd like me!

Unfortunately, I didn't take many pictures in Phoenix.  We were SLAMMED from the second our plane touched down to the second we left!  And we were with the loser!  I can't imagine what Chicago was like!  I would have liked to have been there - I think that would have been even more amazing.  But that's not a complaint, I assure you.  I feel blessed and honored that I was a part of it, period.

I'm also sad I didn't get any pictures of any cacti (or cactuses - which is it?)  or of the mountains in Phoenix.  What a neat place!  Having traveled a lot in the past year and a half, I've realized that much of the country looks the same.  But Phoenix really looked different.


 This was the ballroom where the party was held for John McCain.  He and Sarah Palin were not actually in this ballroom.  

I was hoping that they would come in though because the press folks kept saying "they're not scheduled to appear in here."  Red flag.  Scheduled, huh?

I was hoping they'd show, but nope.


Meet the press!  Here we all are, jammed up all cozy on the risers in the ballroom.  This was actually taken the day before election day.  A lot of us were still setting up.

You've never seen so many wires in your life, I assure you!  This scene would drive my mom crazy because she can't stand cords!

I won't bore you with details of how I was deathly afraid we weren't going to be able to get on TV this night.  Thank God everything worked out!


This was actually on election night.  You can see the McCain/Palin supporters filled the ballroom!

Before the returns started coming in, there was a joyful mood.  Everyone was eating (and drinking!)  and there was some hope in the air.

Then, when the results started coming in, it was strange.  It was like the campaign was keeping the bad news from the crowd.  It wasn't very effective, though, because they had CNN and FOX on those big screens, but the audio wasn't turned up, so you couldn't hear it.  


I took this picture of a country singer at some point during the night.  This was either Hank Williams, Jr. or Chris Rich.  I don't remember.
It was really strange, though.  Every now and then, this guy (I don't remember his name, he was a former Louisiana Governor) would come up to the stage and give outdated election results totally leaving out the fact that Barack Obama was up to like 195 electoral votes and counting.
I could tell the people weren't fooled.  One country singer after another took the stage.  In between there was a band that played lots of Beatles songs.


When McCain would win a state, they would announce it and the crowd would cheer, but it was still kind of sad, subdued.

Then, another country song.  A Johnny Cash song was even repeated twice.

Then, more Beatles covers.

Then, the former LA Governor guy would step back up to the mic all cheesy like and say something outdated.

We just kept going and going and going.  For HOURS.  We were stuck on the risers because there weren't stairs off our end and if we wanted to leave we'd have to duck in front of a bunch of live shots.

If I had it to do over again, I definitely would have made a grocery store run!  We were STARVING.

We did have water, thankfully.  This is my photographer, David, hydrating.

Here are our neighbors on the risers.  We were on the end of a row of foreign press.  Eurovision, love them!

It's so funny to me to watch the correspondents come up and work with the freelance photographers.  There's the language barrier.  But it doesn't matter.  There's the common understanding - they need a microphone, they need an earpiece.  Mic check.  Then they're off and running in their respective languages.

I love their crazy microphones!  Doesn't this one look like a nerf toy?


Towards the end of the night, they opened up the lawn where John McCain was speaking to the supporters who had been in our ballroom.

So, they didn't end up coming in there.  That was kind of a bummer.  I was hoping they would!

We listened to John McCain give what I thought was a very gracious speech conceding to Barack Obama.

We listened to Obama's speech through the internet.  (It wasn't played in the ballroom, which I thought was kind of nasty after McCain had clearly just given a very nice "come together" speech).

Above here, there's David, Sally - my correspondent, and Ivan, our photographer from our Milwaukee station.  I had a great time working with these people.

As with most major news events - I experienced it as a TV news producer first, and as an American second.  We were in "work" mode while the speeches were being made.  We had a job to do.  We went live.  We wrote and shot a story for the next morning.  We tried to find food at the end of the night, but we were unsuccessful.

We ended up going to the I-Hop by our hotel at like 4am, so that was nice.  THEN, I got back to my room and watched a replay of Obama's speech on TV.  I had tears in my eyes.  I was finally experiencing the events as an American.  A proud American.  I hope no one gets all nasty about this post.  It's really lame if you do, I'm just going to pre-call you out.  Whether you supported McCain or Obama, whether you're a Republican or a Democrat, whatever.  The election is over.  History is made.  Mac was gracious.  O was hopeful.  I think this is a remarkable time for our nation.  I am glad to be young and in this country at this time.  I look forward to covering the transition and the new administration.  And I really do believe everything will be okay!

What I do really hope is that all of these millions of people who got involved in some way for the first time in this election will stay involved.  You don't even have to be uber-involved.  You don't have to be the call-my-congressman all the time involved (if you do, good for you though!)  Even if you just registered to vote, and you voted, do it again!  Any level of participation will make this nation greater.  If that truly has changed, this may well be a turning point in our history for all of us.  When I think of the service that so many of our young men and women are doing, the sacrifices that have been made for our country's sake in the past... and I look at what just happened on Tuesday - I'm proud.  Really proud to be an American.  Cue Lee Greenwood!  And I've always been proud!  I was raised to be proud of my country and to participate.

But I know not everyone is/was.  And I think if that's changing, that's remarkable!  Go USA!  We just showed the world how it's done.  This is how you elect a leader.  This is freedom, in action.  Yay us.

Saturday Morning LIVE

It's 7 something on a Saturday morning.  I spent much of yesterday in and out of consciousness.  I love catching up on sleep on Fridays!

Right now, I'm sitting on my porch in my jammies, drinking some of the yummiest coffee around.  It's called "Sinful Delight" and it's from Mill Mountain Coffee & Tea in Roanoke.  I got it on my trip a couple of weeks ago.  I used to work a MMC&T briefly.  I worked there a couple of months to save money to go visit Ann in Slovakia.  I actually loved that job!  It was a de-stresser.  I thought it was remarkable that if you made a mistake - you could just pour it out and start all over again.  Millions of people didn't see your mistake.  It wasn't recorded on a tape for viewing through the ages.  How nice!

Yep.  So, it's me in the papisan chair on the porch in my jammies drinking my Sinful Delight (it's like a blend of everything that is good - chocolate, caramel, hazelnut - I don't even remember everything that's in it)

The trees in my courtyard are looking LOVELY this crisp Saturday morning.  Here, I'll show you:

Pretty, eh?  Not bad for my little urban green space.

It has been rather warm lately.  I enjoy being in denial that winter is coming, so that works for me!

Now I'm going to show you something you rarely see on this blog - my cat!  Yes, I have a cat.  Some of you probably don't even realize that. Katy is often hiding on top of the kitchen cabinets, or behind the toilet.  She was always shy, but she really started to lose it when Brokaw came into the picture.  Lately, she has a new place - the computer chair.  And I'm so proud of her for venturing out!  She's probably looking online at Craigslist or something for a new place...

Friday, November 7, 2008

Super Long Catch Up Blog...

Hello, world.  Here I am.  Yes, me again.  Two days in a row - who's on a blog streak?

I have a new favorite Lean Cuisine:  Butternut squash ravioli in a creamy sauce with walnuts, snap peas & carrots.  Seriously.  I just copied that off the box.  I'm not a big frozen meal fan, but they're perfect for work, and this one is my new fave.

Now, catching up.  I have had 2 pretty great weekends in a row.  Highly saturated with good friends.

I'm just going to go chronologically here.  A couple of weekends ago, I traveled to Roanoke/Lynchburg for Liberty's Homecoming.

I stayed at the Grooms' house - they're like family to me!  What fun.

GirlsnightI had my first real experience with bridal magazines. 

My little Asian wedding planner (it's okay for me to call her that because she likes it!)  busted out seriously about 8 bridal magazines and spread them across the table.

It was fun at first.

Then I saw Heidi's eyes light up as she envisioned creaing things with tulle and a hot glue gun.

I did tear out one picture of a wedding dress.  Er, gown.  Whatever.  I decided I don't really like these magazines.  They make me feel fat.  And short.  And pasty white.  And poor.  And inadequate.

So, there, Modern Bride, or whatever.  Like everything else I do in life that I do well, I have decided to play my own game.  I will plan this sucker mostly online.  Thankfully I have a fiance who is really into this.  And an eager mother.  Now, all we need to do is win the lottery, ha!

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Moving right along... that Saturday, I drove from Roanoke to Lynchburg for the game.

The fall leaves in the Blue Ridge Mountains were breathtaking.  This picture doesn't really do it justice.

But the drive down the mountain from the Grooms' house was awesome!

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I didn't take that many pictures at the game.  It's too bad.

Liberty has come a long way since I was in school.  Not only in that the girls don't have to wear skirts an the guys don't have to wear ties, but look at this stadium!

It's like a real college football game!  There are fans and everything!

And when they score a touchdown, a giant flame shoots up into the air!  It's pretty impressive!

I didn't really pay attention to the game though, because I was catching up with old friends.


Everyone had a baby.  Seriously.  I think they were passing them out or something.  I didn't get one, thankfully!  I must have gone in a different entrance.

This baby doesn't belong to this couple, by the way.  That's Chris and Rebecca with Scott Stone's baby, Elaina.

Chris's parents are in the background.  It was great catching up with them!

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Here is Chris with Scott, the baby daddy.

It is crazy to me, how much these guys have not aged.  They have de-aged, if anything.

That's so not fair how men do that.  I'm filing a complaint.

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And sweet Mandy Leak (Hill now).  I had so much fun catching up with my old YouthQuest buddies!

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I loved the rush of memories that seeing these old friends brought on.

I even thoroughly enjoyed Jesse's enthusiasm!

He is launching truelife.org and is very excited about it! 

YouthQuest has a special place in my heart.  The trips, the ministry, the friendships we made - all priceless.

There were so many other great things about that weekend that I don't have pictures of, doh!  I caught up with my college roommate, Amber, for like 2 hours during the game.  She made me laugh so hard - remembering old times and giving me marital advice, haha!!

I stayed with a group of girls from Liberty that Saturday night and had a blast playing games and laughing way too hard at "Penelope" from SNL.  That Sunday, I drove through Charlottesville to see Jenn & Tim Abbott.  I love them and I absolutely hate that I don't have any pictures of them.

Okay, moving right along...

OctNov08 039This past Saturday, I drove down just outside of Richmond to see my friend Ann.  Ann is doing really well, training for her missionary job.  She leaves in January and I hope to get to see her at least one more time before she leaves the continet.

I hate that she's not going to be in or at my wedding.  Booooo on that. 

We ate way too much food at the Cheesecake Factory. Yummmmmm!!

Here is where I have to fill in another great adventure I had with friends that I don't have a picture for... Before I saw Ann, I stopped at Steve & Christy's.  Michael & I met Steve and Christy on the bus to the Kenny Chesney concert back in July.  They are a super fun couple and we have a lot in common.  It was so nice to be in their home, meet their dogs, oh my goodness - a Jack Russell and a Rotweiller - they are so cute together!  It was just nice to catch up!

Phew!  I see why my boss asks me every Friday, "Where are you going this weekend?"  Haha.  My poor SUV.

Well, Sunday, the friends came to me!  I saw Alena and Kim.  We go way back.  To our youth.  Alena and Kimmy were just 15 or 16 when I was a youth leader back at Rainbow Forest Baptist Church.  I was super  young, too.  Like 20.  Haha.  We were more friends than anything, which for the record, I think is the way to go.  Now these girls are all grown up and I'm super proud of them!  I had to drive outside the Beltway to pick Alena up for church.  That makes me nervous, but I got through it with faith and my trusty GPS!

I was back up to snuff with the picture taking, don't say I didn't warn you!

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You know I'm always up for a Metro photo shoot with the out-of-towners!

My precious Kimmy.

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My sweet Alena.

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I love this one!  The Fall leaves are beautiful on the National Mall.

It looks like we're in front of a green screen with a background keyed on it or something!

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This is where it gets ridiculous.  We were at the WWII Memorial, so of course I had to re-enact the infamous proposal.

Here I am talking to my fake Michael.

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The kiss after I said yes!

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Elated afterwards.

I don't know about you.  The re-enactment was fun and all, but I much prefer the original!  :)

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Look at these beautiful ladies looking fabulous in front of the fountain!

Note the hands on the hips.  What an influental leader I am, ha!

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Kim giving a shout-out to the Mother land.

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Hearting my honey.  I miss him and I am jealous of Texas for having him right now.

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Dave is from Arkansas.

Can you tell?

Everyone does this.  It's great.

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Isn't this cute?  I would like for this to be added to the reasons I need a really good camera column.

Raw talent.  That's all I'm sayin'.

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This is the moment Kimmy became my "special wedding friend."  Also known as the Asian Wedding Planner.

I'm looking forward to her navigating all of these intimidating waters with/for me!

OctNov08 029 

We finished our stroll past the reflecting pool atop the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

I love that one.  It's even better at night though.

Look at the cute little Washington Monument, awwww!!

Okay, I'm pretty much caught up!  Yay for me.  I still have to blog about Election Day.  Whew.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

If I Must...

I haven't been abducted.  I'm not on any internet blacklist that I know of.  I haven't quit blogging forever.  The truth is, I've just been basking in the glory of Michael's fabulous and our awesome engagement.  This truly is a special time.  I just couldn't imagine pushing it down on the blog.  I wanted it to be the lead story forever!  Not b-listed for some lame lament about my coffee or my commute or a blog about how I wore socks for the first time this season. (I have, sadly.)

But, I get it.  Life goes on.  I need to update my about me page, yes, I know this, too.  Someday... when I figure out how to do that.  OctNov08 038 

What better way to stuff down my awesome engagement post than with a giant red Starbucks cup, right?

(This is killing me, just so you know...)

But, it's classic blog style, so that's where I'll begin, before I recap the last few weekends, which, by the way, have been pretty great.

Sorry, I'm out of practice.  Clearly.  Back to the red cup.  Can you believe this?  They're RED.  'Tis the season.


Okay, that's a start.  Maybe more tomorrow.  I'm easing back in.