Monday, October 31, 2011

What today's breaking news says about me

What? Kim Kardashian is getting a divorce?!

Now that the shock has worn off, I think, "surprise, surprise. another celebrity couple gets divorced." But honestly, there's a brief moment when I find out about a celebrity divorce that I really do feel disappointed. This has taught me two things about myself: that I really am a hopeless romantic and promoter of love, and that shamefully, I care way too much about celebrity gossip.

I'm not a mushy person. I rarely indulge in PDA, and as you know from reading my blog, I don't write entire posts about all the adorable things my husband does for me. But that doesn't mean I don't believe in love. It still bums me out when people break up. And while I'm confessing things, I will admit that I love seeing updated relationship statuses on facebook because it means, at least for a little while, that two people are happy and together.

Honestly, while I'm thinking about it, I even feel a twinge of disappointment when a couple from The Bachelor/Bachelorette breaks up: the couples that are 90% staged for the cameras. And even if they are, I think I convince myself every time that this couple might be different. Sad, I know. And one thing the Bachelor and Kim K. have in common, along with Jessica Simpson and the Kate plus 8 lady, is that cameras kill relationships.

As for the whole celebrity gossip thing, well, this is sadly something that I have known about myself for a long long time. No lie, I started watching Access Hollywood when I was ten years old. It's something that I have tried to shake off for years but alas, I can't. But in my defense, I take just as much interest in my real friends lives as I do in people that I have never met. So, I guess you could just say that I'm a busybody who likes to know the goings on in everybody's lives. And frankly, I don't think this is a bad thing. I care about people, so sue me!

So, that's about it. Maybe I'll go and read some more serious news of the world so you don't think that all I do is read the "OMG" section of Yahoo. I'm a well rounded person, I swear.

Happy Halloween!
Love, Annie

Friday, October 28, 2011

Friday date night, aka An Ode to Outback Steakhouse

Remember how I made mention to the fact that there really are NO unique restaurants in our town? We've tried a few, but they are pretty disappointing. We really have to go north or south to other cities to find good restaurants. But there are those Friday nights (mostly every Friday) when my husband comes home so exhausted and he doesn't want to travel far for our traditional Friday date night. So our best option in this janky place is the Outback Steakhouse. 

The food is consistently good, and the service is as well. It's also the place where everybody is. Allow me to use song lyrics to describe the way we have come to feel about our local Outback Steakhouse.

Me: I want to be where the people are. (name that one)

AND (name this one):

Victor: Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name 
(Victor consistently sees his TBS friends eating out at Outback---it's fun to meet them)

Both of us: And they're always glad you came
(for me, it's that the waitresses compliment your outfits, which I love because I was so excited about my $3 Ralph Lauren silk skirt, as pictured below)

Victor: You want to be where you can see our troubles are all the same.
(Because TBS training sucks!)

You want to go where everybody knows your name. 
Thank you, Outback. We'll see you soon.

Happy weekend!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A Blog About Love

No, I'm not referring to my own blog in this case. But did I mislead you with the photo? I just really like this picture.

Anyway, I'm talking about a new blog called "A Blog About Love." It's REALLY good, and I just wanted to share. It's written by a married couple who have both been divorced and have also been dealing with infertility for the last few years, so I feel like they are qualified to talk about working relationships and struggles. And they do it in a non condescending way---more like an open discussion about successful relationships: both in the dating stage and once you are married.

So if you're like me and love blog reading in general, head on over. I think you'll like it!

Love, Annie

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Royal Wedding Revisited

Last night the philharmonic at the University of Mary Washington had a concert featuring all the music from the Royal Wedding. Of course I was on that like white on rice. And it didn't disappoint! 

I was debating wearing my fascinator hat that I bought from the Capital Hill Flea Market, but I thought that might have been a bit much. But after getting there and seeing that the programs were designed like invitations, the entrances had signs saying "friends of the bride/groom," and they were selling the tea specially commissioned for the Royal Wedding (white tea with pink rosebuds---so elegant), I wish I would have. 

It kind of felt like the queen herself made the guest list, because it was mostly old people. But luckily, Victor was wearing the exact same outfit as the elderly gentleman next to him, so we fit right in.
They even played the video footage of the bride's walk down the aisle as they played the music. It was wonderful. Reminisce with me!

I just loved it. My favorite moment is still at 5:10, when Harry peaks over and whispers to William. I don't understand why William can't look at her, but it made for a really cute brotherly moment. I could go on forever. But I won't.

Anyway, it was a fun night. The music was fantastic, and my date was cute, even if he dressed like a 60 year old (but I bought the my bad!).

Thursday, October 20, 2011

little pick-me-ups

Today was a bleh day. The kind of day where you're just in a funk. You know what I mean. Thank you, t.o.m..

I've had these days many times before, so I have a pretty effective game plan on how to get through them.

First of all: hot showers. Showers work wonders for any personal or physical ailment.

Second: retail therapy. Lately, shopping for clothes hasn't been as fun as it used to: that's a whole other funk altogether! But I have enjoyed buying clothes for my husband--I never thought that kind of thing would ever happen. Anyway, I figured out how to break out of that funk: a trip to GOODWILL! I got a ton of cute things, and have no buyers remorse, because it was all less than 30 dollars. Sweet.

And third: cupcakes. This one is hard for me, because there are no good cupcake places around here, and even then, they don't satisfy me the way that my favorite cupcake place, The Sweet Tooth Fairy, does. So what's a girl to do?! 

And then, just like magic, I get a package in the mail from my sister. It was a pair of jeans that I accidentally had sent to her house--long story. So I was expecting the package, but I wasn't expecting this!!
the note is actually folded in half. it doesn't really "i'm grateful you're sorry it took so long."

Even if they arrived looking like that, I had no complaints. Yum yum yum. Perfect timing, Camille!

So that's what did it for me today. I still feel a little bleh, but there are still two things awaiting me tonight that will make me feel better: Project Runway, and sleep. Perfect.

If you have any other techniques for the bleh days, please share. Kthanks! Love, Annie

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Crafting Projects: Get 'er Done

When my mom was in town, she saw my incomplete projects (it's what I do best---get started on multiple things and not finish them) and pushed me through to finish some. The first things were fall decorations. I love fall colors, but I didn't really want to specifically decorate for Halloween---unless you count the dead spiders all around my entryway and patio: that can count for Halloween. So anyway, I did this little piece for my dining area, inspired by Pinterest, of course:
from Pinterest
my version
I also switched out my wreath on the front door, and bought pumpkins. Umm so pumpkins weren't as cheap as I was expecting. That was kind of annoying.

And then there was my big lamp project, which I have been intending to do for months. I originally saw it at Anthropologie for $200 (umm, no thanks!), and then I saw a tutorial for it on-line. I was intimidated to drill the holes through the dishes, but my mom was like, "just get over it and do it!" Oh, moms. Tough love helps to get things done.
the original Anthro lamp
And VOILA, the finished product!!
It's kind of taller, but for this corner of the living room, it really works. So, I'm pretty happy with it. And I didn't glue the pieces together, which means I can switch it out if I want with different pieces. Which I probably will do sometime, because that drill bit was kind of expensive!

So, that's it for now. As usual, I have a lot of other projects lined up, so stay tuned!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Food is what brings us together, today

Three years ago, my family stumbled upon a gem of a restaurant. We were hungry and wanted something, so we turned off into a random town: Culpeper, Virginia. We checked out one or two restaurants and decided to keep looking. Then we saw a cute little cafe, and we were even more intrigued when we saw a Cordon Bleu Paris diploma hanging from the window. So we went in and ate there. And we've never been the same!

Now Culpeper is about an hour away from us. We ventured out there again last night. The drive features some of Virginia's finest scenery. And Culpeper is a darling little town, with cute little shops. I just love everything about it.

Do any of you share with me the secret dream of being a guest chef on Iron Chef America? Well, I've determined that eating at Thyme is the closest I can get at the moment. It's here where choosing items off the menu is like an adventure. Intriguing specials like "pumpkin coconut soup"----delish, appetizers like jumbo shrimp over garlic hummus with sprinkled feta and pine nuts----again, delish. And main courses like top sirloin over potatoes drizzled with truffle oil and topped with a walnut and arugula salad---DELISH. Of course there's more fancy schmancy ingredients in these items, but I forget. You get the idea. And fyi, the prices are actually pretty reasonable---meaning like anywhere from 20 to 50+ dollars a person. 

My dad had the nut encrusted salmon, Victor the lamb shank, and me the steak
Thyme in Culpeper completely embodies the kind of experience everyone should have when they eat out. You leave completely satisfied. Satisfied with the delicious food, the wonderful atmosphere, and the great company.

I love how food has the ability to bring people together. Going out to eat or having dinner parties is one of my favorite pastimes for this reason. Basically, I love food. And when someone recommends a restaurant to me, I take it very seriously. So, if you have any recommendations, even to places not in my neck of the woods, go ahead! They go on my list, and if I ever go to your neck of the woods, it's nice to already have restaurants to try.

Food, glorious food. I hope we have it in heaven.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Things that annoy me (the series)

Once again, this is an ongoing list, but the items of this post are just some of the recent ones.

First things first: People that think that I look like a child. People, I know I'm short, and I sometimes look younger than my age, but I do NOT look like a child! Today, I went on a tour of the White House with the parents, and the ranger deliberately gave my parents the regular brochure, and me the "junior ranger" packet with word searches, coloring, and such. Come on! I'm a 24-year-old married woman, for crying out loud! I know it was early, and I showed up wearing my dad's oversize jacket...
But, I still made an effort to get ready, and I put on makeup, which I think should have people guessing that I am AT LEAST a teenager. (And btw, I refused the junior ranger packet because I actually did want to look at the real brochure--I hope I didn't seem too rude.....but....I don't really care)

Next on the list is: elderly people. Don't get me wrong, I love old people. I'm not anti-elderly or anything, but I am a person of little patience: it is one of my biggest faults. So when I have to stand behind a group of old ladies for a good two minutes just to get a peek into the White House's china room as they are marveling over a portrait of "Lady Bird Johnson," I lose it a little. And then there was an old people party going on at the security line at the Capitol building and, seriously, it was ridiculous. They already took long enough getting all their stuff out of their pockets, and the metal detectors still go off: frustration! I just want to get in there for the gift shop!! (I wonder if it's their replacement hips and knees setting those detectors off, btw)

And finally: bugs and insects. Now that it's getting cooler in these parts, we find crazy huge bugs and spiders in our apartment on a daily basis. It is ridiculous! Such huge spiders. I literally just killed two in the last 30 minutes. A couple of nights ago, there was a cricket in our bedroom. As Victor was chasing it around trying to kill it as it was hopping around, he shouted, "I can't live in this wildlife anymore!!!" Couldn't agree more. We never got the cricket, by the way. It hid under the bed, but luckily it never started chirping during the night, or we would have busted a cap.

So, anyway, I think that's it for today. It feels good to get that off my chest! Happy weekend!

Love, Annie

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Living it up at the Hotel Castro

Lindsay is gone, and now my mom is here! We picked her up right as we were dropping Lindsay off, and tomorrow my dad is flying in. They'll be in a hotel later this week, but in the mean time, they're all staying at our place, and we love it.
Twas a fun week. We saw all the sites that are essential to see for a first time visitor. That always involves A LOT of walking. It was exhausting at times. But fun. And educational.

So, Lindsay works for, a company specializing in genealogy work. It's based in Utah, but they always work with agents in various parts of the world to help them with research. And since I live near Washington D.C., the land of many, many records, I hope to start working for them as an agent to pull records for them at the National Archives and other places, and then send copies of the records for them. It's no full time job, but it's still something that interests me. There's also a chance that I can work with them as they start working on Eastern European records--mostly Romanian--to help translate and such. I'm excited about it!!

We went to the National Archives so I could practice pulling a record. I have a research card and everything. I feel so official! The National Archives are legit. There is so much stuff there. A genealogist's paradise.
I think Lindsay could sense that I would love doing something like this. So I'm way grateful for her for thinking of me. It was such a fun week to catch up with her. And now my parents are coming. And Victor's schedule has eased up a little bit...for now. I'm a happy girl. And a grateful girl.

I love you all. Happy Sunday.