Archive for goals

Snow Day: 2 Month Rewind

Um, my bad. It’s been almost 2 months since I posted. I don’t even know where the time has gone or why I didn’t post. No excuses, so let’s just get back on track and do a little rewind of the past 2 months while I’m enjoying a snow day here in Virginia. You know I love a countdown!

4 Must-Know Updates

4. BUCKET LIST CONCERT

Just this week, I went to see Bush in concert. A band I’ve wanted to see since 1996. Only took 19 years! I missed them when they toured in 2010 and I told myself if they ever came around again, I’d be there.

They didn’t disappoint, but like a lot of older bands, I wanted them nix the new stuff and play my classic favorites.

Gavin Rossdale of Bush

Gavin Rossdale of Bush

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. ANACONDA

That fat puss is alive and well and still makes me smile every single day. Seriously, why did I wait so long to have a furry friend?

All class, my Anaconda

All class, my Anaconda

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. LOCAL CELEBRITIES

No bigs or anything, but I met Sarah Fraser from 107.3. I’ve been a fan of hers since she was on that other radio station. She also told me she loved my outfit. It was a jumpsuit, so of course she did!

Me and Sarah F!

Me and Sarah F!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. AUSTIN, TX

I knocked off one of four travel destinations in February when I visited Austin, TX. While I had originally planned to go by myself, true to form, friends came out of the woodwork – 1 old travel buddy and 1 colleague. I had an OK time – 6 out of 10. I give it that rating mostly because I was pretty sick and just didn’t have the energy to do all I wanted. I was also surprised by the lack of activities you could do without a car. But here were some of my favorite snaps from the trip. I think I’d definitely go back, but I’d like to go for ACL or SXSW – obvs.

Mags in Austin

Mags in Austin

Boots for DAYS!

Boots for DAYS!

Mt. Bonnell overlook

Mt. Bonnell overlook

2014: The Year That Was…

I realize we are officially one week into 2015, but I never actually shared a review of 2014. I think that was mostly due to the fact that I wasn’t wholly impressed with 2014. Yes, lots of great things happened (like my new job!), but I didn’t feel like I had moved forward a lot. I realize now that’s simply untrue. I just didn’t move at the pace I wanted, which made me eager to start 2015 and my 2015 goals (as you already know!).

But, I should never wish away time. So here’s a very quick look back at 2014.

WordPress had this to say about my 2014. Looks like everyone was super keen to learn about my Grumpy Cat painted pumpkin. In fairness, it was pretty rad.

Wordpress 2014 Review

WordPress 2014 Review

I did knock a lot of my 2014 goals, such as:

  • Completing year 2 of The Happiness Project
  • Improving my career (yay!)
  • Repairing my right knee…again
  • Traveling to 3 international destinations!
  • And knocking out the remaining items on my DC bucket list

But there were also a few things that either didn’t happen or just fell short:

  • Running that elusive 10-miler
  • Saying yes to everything (because I learned that saying NO, is just as important)
  • And I only made it to 17 books, not the full 25 I had hoped.

Truthfully, I’m not disappointed at all. Mainly because I’m still actively working on being a better version of myself. I’ll always have goals in motion. Plus, I did manage to read some really amazing books – both for my book club, but also for myself and my career. Here’s a little visual display from Goodreads.

Read in 2014

Read in 2014

If you get a chance to pick up a spare book, here are my top 3 of 2014:

3. Walkable City
2. The Night Circus OR What Alice Forgot
1. Who Moved My Cheese?

Ok, so that’s technically 4, but you know what…it’s my blog 🙂 Anyways, I’m really excited to keep on reading. Mostly because I’m really driven this year to read industry books as well as fiction/non-fiction. My work has a great little library going and I’m currently working my way through an entire stack. Plus, I’m always creepin’ Cranky’s Goodreads; so if you have any must-read suggestions, leave me a comment!

There were definitely times this past year where I was just over it. 100%, without a doubt, done. And I just couldn’t wait to move past where I was. In fact, I was giddy with excitement for 2015, but I saw this the other week as everyone made their resolutions to make 2015 better than the last and when I read it – I felt thankful. Truly, for where I’m at. I’ll get to where I’m going, one day. Happy 2015!

2014 in a nutshell

2014 in a nutshell

Goals: Ready for 2015

I know, I know – I’m early. I’ve also been a little absent as of late. I hate that I keep promising I’ll be more active and yet can’t find the time – so I decided to kick off my 2015 goals a little early to help me really define what was important and what needed to be cut. Spoiler alert: the blog made the ‘important’ list. Woot.

I think I struggled a lot in 2014 because my goals weren’t measurable and while that was definitely a conscious decision, it was one that left me frustrated. So this year, I’m going back to my measurable goals and I’m excited to admit, I’m ready for that accountability again. I’m going to wait until January to review my 2014 goals as I’ll be knocking off a few things very soon, but I know I fell short in some areas. Instead of beating myself up, I’ve just decided to look ahead. So here’s 2015, admittedly, I’m starting in 2014.

  1. Reach goal weight (165) – that is and isn’t an arbitrary number. It’s there to give me a number to work towards, but it’s also there as motivation.
  2. Run a 10-miler. I’m starting training now with the plan that I’ll make it into the Cherry Blossom 10-miler in March/April time frame.
  3. Remove negative people from my life (this one is very specific, but I know better than to talk shit about crazy people on the interwebs).
  4. Adopt/Rescue 1 animal (cat? dog?).
  5. Blog 4 times per month (my goal is to make that Mondays, FYI).
  6. Travel to 4 new places, domestic or international (basically, 1 per quarter).
  7. Read 20 books
  8. Year 3 of the happiness project
  9. Pay off extraneous credit cards and close as soon as possible
  10. Reduce number of jobs to 1.5 (instead of 3)
  11. Take a new class (possibly design)
  12. Try Gaelic sports again (all depending on how my knee feels)

I think most of those are pretty self explanatory, except maybe #10. In case you didn’t know, when it rains it pours and while there was a time when I had barely half a job, I now have 3 (full time regular, dog daycare/pet sitting, and then the Mary Kay business I attempted this summer).

Pretty much effective immediately I’ll cease my MK biz. While I struggled with a little guilt at first because I felt like a failure, I don’t feel guilty anymore. Simply put, I didn’t enjoy it. Sales is not my forte; however, I am very pleased that I tried it, met new women, and learned some new skills. I even attribute the confidence I gained in those first few months to finally landing my job that I have now (and love!). No regrets, not a one.

As for the dog daycare/pet sitting – my goal is to reduce that to 2-3 shifts a month total (either at the daycare or pet sitting). While I do like it, I find that I hate how busy I feel and quite frankly, I feel exhausted and worn down. I’m also likely to stop my dog training observation. I don’t have the time to fully commit to attending every Monday night and I don’t feel as though I’m learning anything new. I keep repeating the same classes for observation. I want progression and movement and it’s just not happening. I do still plan to continue to learn and see what other opportunities are in the area – but I just don’t think the observations I’ve been doing this summer/fall suit me or my schedule. When I’m not learning, I get frustrated.

Speaking of learning, I really hope to take a class next year. Possibly design and see how much I love it again – see if I want to go for a certificate or maybe even explore Masters options. Getting a masters might be way beyond what I really want, but I like the thought of exploring what’s out there.

So there you have it – I’m ready for 2015 and I’m already knocking some of the more pressing goals off my list. I think it’s important to focus on the things that make me happy instead of the things that stress me out. I want to have time to relax, an opportunity to feel bored (so I can then sit down to read or think up an adventure), time to hang out with my friends and not have to consult my calendar every time, etc. What I don’t want is how I’ve felt the past few months – overwhelmed. While I’ve had tons of fun, it’s just almost been too much.

To 2015, the year I’m going to focus on ME and the year I’m going to choose joy above all else.

Weekend review: Labor Day (plus a rewind!)

This past weekend flew by and while I had intentions of at least one other blog post…alas, it is Monday night. Already. Sadsies.

I did a lot of work over my holiday weekend, but I did manage at least one, fun awesome day of wine tasting with my sis and a few friends. It’s kind of turned into a tradition that my sis and I go wine tasting and after a few really fun trips with a couple of people…we’ve sort of, accidentally on purpose, turned into a wine group.

Yesterday, we checked out Maggie Malick Wine Caves in Purcellville, VA. And yes, the tasting room is actually in a wine cave!

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While the winery itself has that “small business” feel to it, there are over 200 acres of land/vineyards. All of us really loved that Maggie herself, was behind the counter, pouring her guests tastings and interacting with everyone. Of course, we got a photo!

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And here’s the view!

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They had a live jazz band there as well. Here’s Belle enjoying the music (and yes, we only pick wineries that are pup friendly so Belle can join the fun!).

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It was a great day with the wine group and we’re already planning our next winery adventure. It’s pretty fun to just pick a spot, meet up, eat and drink for a few hours, and walk away with some great memories.

And since I’m here, I thought I’d do a quick recap of the past few weeks since I haven’t quite found my blogging groove again. I’m working on figuring out a schedule that works for me, but for now…here we go. Here are 4 great pics that sum up my past couple weekends.

1. Brunch at Beuchert’s Saloon: Had brunch with a long-time friend and her hubby a few weekends back. They were visiting for a conference and we met up for bottomless mimosas at Beuchert’s Saloon. We kept the party going and had a few more bevvies. I don’t know what we’re all laughing at here, but this picture is priceless in my book. I do love the friends I’ve made along the way and even though we don’t talk every day, we’ve managed to stay in touch.

photo 1(1)
2.
Road trip to Richmond: I visited Richmond, VA last weekend to catch up with an old college friend. In truth, we were really only acquaintances at best, but life has a way of bringing people together when you need them most and now she’s definitely a friend. Here’s her adorable pup, Annabelle. You know I was in love!

photo 3(1)
3. Puppy sitting
I’ve been puppy sitting again to boost my travel fund. Sometimes I forget how fun it can be, especially when you get to hang out in rich people’s houses and enjoy their fancy hammocks. Man, I love a good hammock.

photo 2(1)
4. New job!
And last, but not least…my new job! I’m in love, people. In love! My coworkers are fab and I love all the events and adventures I get to go on. It’s not all conferences in SF, but just getting to be a part of something greater has put new spirit and excitement in my blood. They look to me as a marketing guru and when I voice an opinion, I”m heard! I’m also doing TONS of reading which feels good and I feel like my writing has been elevated. There is a big hill to climb, in terms of getting our site/blog/feed really out there…but it’s good to be a part of a team again. Here I am in Crystal City, checking out an art installation called #crystalwings. We saw it coming back from an event. Fun, right?!

photo 4(1)And that’s a wrap. Back to your regularly scheduled Monday program!

Goals: NEW Career

It’s been awhile since my last post and since then the universe has made way for some exciting new opportunities. For awhile, my life was very much submitting job applications and going on interviews and then my luck changed and I landed a new gig.

I am now a Marketing Manager for a Transportation Demand Management company based out of Arlington, VA. I don’t know much about TDM, but I do know about marketing and I’m very excited to work for a company that focuses on change in my local area.

I’ve been with the company for a whopping 2 weeks and am already out on a business trip in San Fran at a conference. Fun! Here’s a pic of me on my 3rd day of work with a new colleague who had also recently started:

20140803-150324-54204276.jpg

It’s a welcome change and now that things have settled down a bit, I hope to get back to blogging a lot more regularly. I hate that I’ve been absent, but a lot of that came down to me being ashamed of not having my life together. But no more…yay!

Now I just need a furry friend and find a decent human being that likes the same stuff I do and we can call it a day….

Weekend review: Sweetlife festival

This past weekend I crossed another goal off the old 2014 list and went to the Sweetlife festival at Merriweather Post Pavilion. It wasn’t the usual 3-day festival, but it met necessary criteria by having a lot of great bands there, so I jumped on board. I went with a friend and we kept the day fairly casual, showing up well after doors had opened and sitting back on the lawn people watching in between bands. See, here’s me being casual…

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There were a few rain drops during the day, but ain’t no thang…

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As the day went on, we managed to make quite a few friends that were seated near us. As it turns out, Sweetlife was riddled with 15 year olds getting high before their parents came to pick them up, so all the “oldies” decided to band together. Ahhh, to not be a teen ever again.

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And of course as the day went on, there was plenty of dancing…

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All in all, a really fun day that was drama-free and quite memorable! Goal accomplished.

Weekend review: Homely

Part of the challenge of moving into my own place would be knowing how to fill my time and to be OK with being alone. Sometimes, I’m not OK with that, but it’s always a learning opportunity. Like last weekend when a lot of my friends were either busy or out of town, I had an entire weekend to fill with activities. To find a way to make my time valued and memorable. So what did I do? Exactly what I wanted to.

I’m an avid reader of Young House Love and find that their style inspires my own home decor, which has made it really fun to layer and build up my new apartment. YHL is also based out of Richmond, a mere 2 hour road trip away and this past weekend was the opening of Homerama. I’ve been reading about Homerama for months now over on Young House Love, as they helped decorate one of the houses, and I knew that even though I’d be off an adventure by myself…I just couldn’t miss out.

I didn’t get to meet John and Sherry, but I did geek out over all the little details of the house, and absolutely LOVED seeing something in real life that I’d been stalking online for awhile. Here’s a compilation of all my favorite details in the house. I think style really seeps out in the details and it’s the small pieces that make a statement, rather than the large…er, statement pieces.

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I even met up with a friend from college for a quick coffee and sweet treat down in Carytown while I was in Richmond. All in all, a successful road trip. Did I also mention there was beer and bluegrass at the Homerama? Oh yeah, that was a nice treat too. As it turned out, I was perfectly okay on my own.

Oh and I just have to share my latest baking adventure – Chocolate Whiskey Pecan Pie. It was a recipe I tore out of Real Simple a few months ago and since I had a bit of spare time on my hands, I thought I’d get crafty? Bakey? Something…

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Here’s the recipe for anyone that would like to try it too…

Whisk together:

  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 4 tbsp melted unsalted butter
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 tbsp whiskey
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt

Fold in:

  • 2 cups pecan halves
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Pour into:

  • 1 unbaked 9-in piecrust

Bake at 350 until the center is set but still slightly wobbly, 40-50 min. Let cool.

Mine was done at 40 minutes and while the center was set and wobbly, it was gooey when I cut into it a few hours later (assuming that’s how it’s meant to be?). It’s definitely a decadent sweet treat and even with only 2 tbsp of whiskey, you still get that nice flavoring. My only mistake? I used a graham cracker crust, which I guess is technically not ‘unbaked’ but it still worked.

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