Monday, January 4, 2010

NYR... Grading day has come.

Last year I made NYR which looking back from this day to one year ago, I give myself an overall grade of a C- in following through with them. There were 7, ranging from having peace of mind about certain things, to saving certain amounts of money. All in all, when there was a concrete goal: "Save X amount of $ by X date", I seemed to do great. When there was "Be more _________" or "Do more ______" I failed. I will try to rework my logic on the next NYR's to be sure to account for my pit falls.

Concrete NYR's
#1: Save 10,000 (hopefully more like 15).
#2: Go on 2 vacations.

- Make more food at home, eat out less.
- Try to bake & cook new things-- I got this started on the right foot... Today I bought a crockpot and cooked!! I invited some friends over and it was glorious. I averaged it out, and it was aprox $4 per person. I rock. Thanks Gran for the inspiration to do it.
- Spend more quality time with friends & family.
- Maintain organization.
- Stay @ current job for this year unless an upgrade comes along.
- Do more crafty things.
- Blog more.
- Take more pictures.
- Better nighly routines.

Last year before 2009 came, I took a survey for myself to see only. Since I have switched to more "paperless diarying" and now this is open to the public, I will be more selective of the questions/answers, however, I think these are fun and are a neat way to benchmark the changes that happen over a year. This is a tradition I hope to keep:

Questions about 2009

Where did you begin 2009? 
@ Davis's. Dancing with Mike, Kristen and Renee. Maybe there were more people there but I can't remember. Distinctly I recall Lady Gaga's "Just Dance" blaring while we all danced in the middle of an insanly crazy dance floor that was packed. We had a blast this night. I remember it fondly.

Did you have to go to the hospital?
When baby Sydney was born. Often for lunch with John.

Any encounters with the cops?
First response to a car accident where a person had a stroke and drove their car into a light post going pretty fast. Had to stay and talk to the cops for a while as I was the only person who witnessed him hitting the pole, swerving and hitting the curb before the pole, and hitting another car... This was a scary day. I was on my way to let my dogs out before returning back to work.

Where did you go on vacation?
This is funny, as last year, my exact response was "to Kansas... three times... yuck..."
This year I also went on three vacations, the first was to Miami, second was to Mexico on a cruise, and the third was to Kansas. It was a nice break to not travel to Kansas three times in one year, but the down side of that was not getting to see Lucas very much :(

Purchase anything over 500?
Purchased an external flash for my camera. 399.00, Vacations +++.

Anyone get married?
Dad & Barb
Mike & Kris
Chad & Miranda
Tom and Carley
... I am sure more.

Did you move?

Sporting events attended:
I think we went to about 4 blazer games. Thought about going to a Seahawks vs Jaguars game, but opted out for some reason.. I also think 3 out of the 4 Blazers games we went to ended in Chalupa nights, and I still have never eaten a chalupa... weird...  Went to watch the new UO Volleyball team sans Forristall on court.
We might have went to more than this, but I can't remember..


Where do you live now?
La Casa

Describe your Birthday:
Woke up LATE to drive to Portland in the morning to catch our early flight to Kansas. It was freezing outside, about 16 degrees. We made it to the Airport, and I am not really sure how because I woke up without an alarm at 2:15 am, and we needed to have left the house about 30 min. before. Anyways, we had to walk in the FREEEEEZING cold from "long stay parking" to the terminal. When we got to Denver it was 6 degrees, and then we finally got to Kansas, I got to see my beautiful Lucas. He was standing there waiting for me with a balloon and a flower. SO PRECIOUS. We ate at Carlos O'Kellys, went home and Tiff had made us brownies. It was a great day that was full of traveling, with a great little reward. My Lucas.

What was the one thing you thought you would never do in 2009, but did:
Get promoted to Therapist.

Favorite moments:
Miami- going to starbucks every morning, laying on the beach..
The craziness of the summer... Weddings, graduations, birthdays..
Mexico- relaxation
Kansas- dancing with Lucas... Thizzzzzzle!!

Favorite nights out: 
Probably new years LAST year, I think that still counts. I had fun when we went out in Kansas.. This year we didn't do a whole lot of "going out", we did a lot more of "staying in and acting like we are 100 years old".. I like doing that. :)

I still have more questions, I will post more soon. It is my challenge for those who read this to answer these questions too. I know I am not the only one with a terrible memory, and even for those who might have sharp recall- that is only temporary. It is fun to read back on these things..

Happy New Year!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Kansas December 9-16th

I was so happy to see my little Lucas. We got into town on my birthday, which was the bestest birthday presente ever.  I got off the airplane to Lucas holding a flower and a balloon for me. It melted my heart.

While we were there we did a lot of relaxing, eating delish food Tiff made us, watched movies, played with Lucas, had a little Christmas, went out, slept, etc. etc. etc.

Here are a few pictures from our trip.
Sorry there are so few, but Tiff & I both realized we brought our camera's out FAR too little.

These are from the night we went out dancing @ Grand Slam. We had a blast getting ready this day. Tiff and I did our make up kind of crazy, and had been goofing around with hair and make up for most of the day.. Just like old times :)

As you can see, we got the party started before we even left the house.

Here are some pictures that are more christmas-oriented:

Some Randoms:

Last of all, Pictures from the last day @ the airport.
Lucas was being so cute this day... Running around the airport, screaming happy sounds, loving on us, being silly. It made it hard to leave. I was happy to see him at his finest right before we left though.

So sad to not be with them every day. Looking forward to their next visit out here.
Lucas is the most beautiful, smart, adorable, hilarious young man you could imagine. He is curious about everything, loves music, loves to dance, loves to love, loves to cuddle. I miss him very much already. A week was just not long enough...

Lucas, Tiff & Greg- We miss you guys. Thanks for having us at your home.

Hasta 2009

2009 was full of life changing things.
I will try to put these in order of the way they happened, but not really sure if its realistic to assume I have the memory to do so.

Jan-April- Can't honestly think of much that happened in these months...

May- John and I took a trip to South Beach. We loved it. Beautiful weather, beautiful beach, good shopping, food, drinks, etc. etc.

June- Tiff & Lucas arrived in town, John & I graduated from the UO, Dad & Barb got married.

July- Lucas turned 1... Big Celebration.

August- Mike & Kris get married.

September- I get a promotion to THERAPIST... Cruise to Mexico..

October- I get moved into the Phoenix Program- I LOVE IT HERE!!!

December- Trip to Kansas.

2009 was busy. Undeniably busy. Stressful busy. Fun busy.

Well, I have declared more than once that I was going to update my blog of things that happened over the last year..

So, here is one last blog having anything to do with 2009... Then, clean slate for 2010.

I believe things that need to be addressed are as follows:

New Years Resolutions


Cruise- Sept 20-27

John and I decided we wanted to road-trip to California instead of taking a quick flight. So, we packed up our stuff and headed south. Our intention was to stop in San Fran, but as we approached the city, I got overwhelmed, and decided we better just drive on through (better to go back via plane, and commute through the city on foot, taxi, public transit). We stopped a couple of times on the way, one stop we did a little damage as we stumbled across an outdoor outlet mall that was quite nice. We left our house at about 5 am, and got into our Hotel RIGHT before the clock struck 12am. It was a LONG day of driving. I was resistant, but looking back I am now eager to take another trip. John and I always have fun together, and it was also pretty neat to see the weather just get warmer and warmer, and we felt so accomplished when we made it to our destination. Of course we made one very important stop on the way... In & Out burger, which I don't particularly like, but John would go crazy if he didn't have his Animal Style.

Our first day in Long Beach with Dad & Barb:

We walked all over long beach, shopped our little hearts out. I did some damage at their Nordstroms. Long beach was fun, we ate a lot of good food, went to a bunch of different restaurants, spent a lot of money. We did this for two days in long beach.. Relaxing, shopping, drinking, spending money. Rinse, Lather, Repeat. Even though we are what you call "veteran cruisers", it was still a little bit of a shock to get on the boat and eat all you want and not have a bill at the end of the meal due to our money spending excapades in Long Beach. The Hilton we stayed at had a really nice pool, so we did some relaxing and swimming there also.
Highlights of Long Beach: Waitress @ Taco Beach (bird shit on her while she was taking our order, full on hilarity ensued. we had A LOT of laughs about this), Multople drinks & watching football at Smooth's, Breakfast @ "The Omlet Inn"--- DELISCIOUS!
Lowlight of Long Beach: John getting HIVES!!!! ("My armpits are itchy...")Running 10 blocks from downtown LB, to the hotel to find the gift shop BARELY still open in time to buy him some Benadryl..

Day 1 (September 20th) : Cruisin'
Today we got all of our stuff loaded up in my car, drove to the embarkation port, unloaded our lugage, pulled our our passports, and before you knew it, we were on the boat and sunbathing!
The boy's had their shirts off in no more than 15 min after stepping foot onto the boat. As you can see, us ladies opted to stay classy and keep ours on. We had to wait some amount of hours before we were allowed to go to our staterooms, as they finished the hustle and bustle of soarting luggage. In the meantime, we watched as our enormous boat (biggest in the entire fleet) departed Long Beach and started on the Journey, as well as checked out our new home for the week. As soon as we thought it was safe to head to our Riviera Deck, we did. All our rooms weren't too far away from one another. Dad & Barb found some surprises waiting for them in their room, so we met up and had some bubbly with them!

Dinners soon became our favorite part of every single day, as we would often go do "our own things", and every night at dinner we would all meet around our huge table and do some serious EATING. Additional to the food, our waiter Sekson (who very shortly into our stay informed us that since his name- pernounced Sex-Saan, was difficult for some, we could allow ourselves the liberty of calling him "Sexy", and we did. He was the best. Here are a few of our finest from the first evenings dinner:

The next day/day's we had "At Sea" time... AKA, lay in the sun and drink LOTS of beer days (or for me, try the strange "drink of the day" or strawberry daq's with lots of whip cream), explore the boat days, eat a lot days, swim days... These days are best put in photographic evidence form, as words don't really do it.

Following this night was our first formal dinner. I think we all had a blast @ dinner, ate a lot, and did unlady like, un gentileman like things while we were all looking so lovely.
<---Our food Babies

John's one bite challenge... Behind him, is our lovely waiter Sexy.

Following our formal night John & I found our second home at the poker table. It was a fun little interactive gaming table that I had a lot of success at and John didn't have a lot of success at. Either way, we both had fun. These are pictures of us getting ready to go out for the night which included playing poker, watching comedy, and we even found KODA in our room after dinner..


The next day.. More Pool/Drink time & a FUN dinner.

I think it is important to mention that at this point, Curtis and Suzie haven't really made an appearance in any of our photos.. This is because most of the time we had no clue where they were. We even had radio's we used while on the boat, and often times Curtis was in his room sleeping while we were all out in the sunshine...
A good ending to our evening, we found a cute little elephant, and then watched movies in our stateroom as we fell asleep. Luckilly on this cruise they had three movie channels, all with new releases playing. Kept us entertained while we recovered from our days full of dehydrating sun & booes.

The next day was our first port of call... Puerto Villarta!
As you can tell, it doesn't look like much is going on in the first shots as everyone gets off the boat and is mulling around what the hell we are going to do.. Finally we decide to just take off down the beach. As you can see the sky isn't blue, but that is no indication that it wasn't hot... Because it was, Hot and Muggy.
I will try to narrate the pictures that may need it..

So, Curtis & Suzie made their fist appearance here... We went to a cute little resort that was right off the beach. After a LONG walk, and passing some of Puerto's finest security systems. We also saw a sad dead little puffer fish, and John was crawling on a rock with a bunch of jumping crabs.. At the swim up bar we did all kids of fun things, my favorite was recieving a 75 min massage for 35 USD. AMAZING! I wish we had those kinds of deals in the states.
Highlight of Puerto Villarta: Knee Racing, laughing until crying, bloody knees, also playing mortal combat in the pool, apparently I also missed Curtis knocking the wind out of Kristen...... LOL
Lowlight of Puerto Villarta: Overcast.

Pre Dinner & Mikes 1 bite challenge.

Next Day: Mazatlan!
In Mazatlan, we took a cab to El Cid... Beautiful hotel, we purchased ALL INCLUSIVE for the day... I got wasted. The boys drank basically nothing, which was hilarious because on the boat when the drinks are extreemely expensive, and at the other ports they drank like fish... As soon as they had the allure of unlimited already paid for drinks they said "I'll take water"... Kristen and I were baffled by this.

I tried to demonstrate just how wasted I was, and just how sober John was...
Highlight of Mazatlan: BOOGIE BOARDING, Sorry no pictures... Macarana, BINGO in the pool, The exercise buff who I almost ran away with, the Nachos, and the unlimited drinks...
Lowlights of Mazatlan: Overcast.. I also tumbled over in a wave and snorted a nasty amount of salt water... ICK.

Dinner this night, I have almost fully recovered. John looking like he spent all day recovering from the first part of the week... At this point, I can't believe that our cruise is coming to what feels like an end! However, we talk a lot at dinner about visiting Tobasco's, and being in CABO..

Cabo day started awesome. Beautiful sky... A nice trip over to Cabo, high hopes for our most highly anticipated destination:
We saw some very stylish men right when we got off our catamaran and stepped foot into Cabo.

We treated Mike & Kris to the Marlin'... Both John and I have done this in our past trip's to Cabo. This is my third time to be in Cabo, so I sat out of the tradition and watched while Mike & Kris took a tripple shot upside down..

Then, as we left the Giggling Marlin, a VERY SERIOUS EVENT HAPPENED:

 WE got soaked. It was pouring! Luckilly, We went to "Da'Right Joint" and turned our monsoon into a really fun day.

We got back on the Catamaran, and headed back to the boat. We survived the flood. We survived the Rain.
Highlights of Cabo: Da'Right Joint
Lowlight of Cabo: No Tobasco's... :(


We had such a blast!! The next day we woke up, got in the car, and started our Journey home... Before we got too serious about driving home, we stopped at the LA Zoo, and played around. John drove straight home, just as he drove straight there... We stopped at Denny's and ate some good food in Sac town, played all kids of alphabet games, and most of all had a safe and fun Journey home. I think on the way back we might have wished a little bit that we had flown there, however, that faded pretty soon after we hit the pillow.

Highlight of the Trip: Smiling, Laughing, Sun, Fun
Lowlight: Having to go back to work. :)