~ Black Friday ~

I can officially say that, because Thanksgiving was yesterday and CHRISTMAS is upon us! WooHoo!  

Happy Friday to everyone.  I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving with your friends, family, co-workers, pets, and whomever else you may have spent it with.  I have had a wonderful week home with the parents.  It was really hard to pick only 5 things to talk about, so some of them are bundled into collages :)  You'll see . . .

Saturday I came home and was greeted by my brother's Bernese Mountain Dog, Butters.  He's such a sweetie!  Butters is HUGE!  Look at him!  I finally got used to him being around and then my brother left on Sunday afternoon to head back to D.C.  

While we were at Wal-Mart on Sunday, dad bought some food for his birds.  Dad has a problem with squirrels, so he bought this brick of bird food to put in a little hanging cage for the birdies to eat.  The squirrel got to it anyways.  Gotta give the little guy credit for his determination!

On Wednesday I had lunch with a friend that I haven't seen in 8 years!  After high school Stephanie and I were always together.  There was one summer that we followed the band The Calling around to Atlanta, Columbus, and Norfolk.  Sooo much fun!  We met for lunch in downtown Roanoke at The Quarter. She told me about her family - husband and two beautiful children - and what she's up to.  I told her about having moved to Los Angeles and what I'm doing now.  It was great to catch up.  

Yay for the Drumstick Dash in downtown Roanoke!  This is my second year participating.  All week, while I've been home, we were wondering if it would be too cold to do the dash this year.  Mom said if it was in the 20's that she wasn't going to do it.  Come Thursday morning it was 24 degrees and we were up getting ready!  All bundled up and ready to go!  When we finished the Drumstick Dash it was 28 degrees.  It's our tradition to go to Starbucks afterwards.  I got a Venti Soy Hot Chocolate with no Whip.  Yum-O!

After the Drumstick Dash we went home and watched the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, showered, and got ready for dinner!  We went to Cracker Barrel for dinner and it was worth the wait.  We only have to wait one hour and twenty minutes :)  Mom didn't have to cook.  Dad didn't have to do dishes.  The food was great!  After dinner we went to see the new Disney movie Frozen and I am absolutely in love the the snowman Olaf. He's soooo cute!  Then, we continued our Thanksgiving tradition and went to the Hotel Roanoke and got beverages at the Pine Room and looked at the Christmas Trees.  My two favorites are the candy tree and the snowman tree.

I hope everyone had a joyous Thanksgiving.  What did you do?  Any traditions, new or old?  Tell me all about it!

I'm linking up with
Lauren Elizabeth ~ High Five for Friday
The Diary of a Real Housewife ~ Friday Favorites

Happy Thanksgiving


 I thought I would bring some humor to your Thanksgiving ~ Enjoy!

I love the parade!!!!!



hahaha...so true

watch out Target shoppers...I'm here for those crazy movie deals!

Happy Thanksgiving to you, your family, and loved ones!

Looking forward to...

Downton Abbey ~ Season 4
~ January 5, 2014 ~

After the heartbreaking Season 3 finale I can only wonder what Season 4 will bring!  Apparently two very handsome new men (both interested in Lady Mary), the first black cast member (also quite handsome), a new lady maid, and a new valet.

Take a look . . .

Linking up with Because Shanna Said So for Random Wednesday

My Thankful List

I was scrolling through Bloglovin and came across Back East Blonde's post for the day - An Unconventional Thankful List.  What a great idea!  Of course I'm thankful for my family, friends, and their support.  I'm thankful for being employed and being able to support myself.  I'm thankful for my health.  What about the little things...and I mean the really little things?  I have put together a list of some things that I'm thankful for that you might think is silly :)

1.  PicMonkey ~ I love this website.  My best friend, Lindsay, introduced it to me.  I am able to edit, crop, fancy up my pictures.  Without PicMonkey, I wouldn't be able to do this (above).
2.  My Eye Glasses ~ They hide my eyebrows when I haven't had a chance to groom them in a while.  Also, on days that I choose not to wear makeup, they are good face hiders.  Oh, and they help me see :)
3.  My Warm Snuggly Slippers ~ They keep my feets warm.
4.  Target ~ I mean, come on!
5.  Sales ~ The shopping kind of sales.  Without sales I really couldn't ever buy new clothes.
6.  Barnes & Noble ~ I love books and I love walking into BN.  It's my happy store.
7.  Winnie the Pooh ~ This famous teddy bear is so lovable and cute.  I can pop The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh into my DVD player and my spirits will be lifted!
8.  Nicholas Sparks ~ He's my favorite author.  I know that when I pick up one of his books I will not be disappointed.  Plus, his books always turn into movies that I absolutely always have to see.
9.  Orthodontia ~ My parents got me braces in 8th grade.  I will forever be thankful for my lovely straight teeth.
10.  Hair Color ~ I'm too young to be graying (whiting really)!  Thank goodness for Clairol Perfect 10 in Light Auburn.. It's $13 and the closest to my natural hair color that I've ever found.  Go on Grays - Be Gone!
11.  Scales ~ They may not always be my friend, but at least their honest.  It's a much needed wake up call sometimes.
12.  The Four Seasons ~ A big reason why I moved back east from California was because I missed the seasons.  Getting into winter now, I don't miss having spring/summer all year round.
13.  Vaseline ~ The best stuff ever!  Without it my lips would be a mess.
14.  Cats & Kittens ~ I love them!  They are so cute and furry and friendly.
15.  Snowmen ~ They are always happy with a smile on their faces. Plus, it means snow and I love snow!
16.  Movies ~ I love them...I wanted to be in them...sorta still do!  They are fantastic.
17.  Live Theater ~  There's nothing like live theater.  With an audience it's a different show every night.
18.  Vampire Diaries ~ Damon Salvatore.

I'm linking up with Glossy Blonde and Karly Kim for Totally Posted Tuesday!  Link up and have some fun.
Glossy Blonde

Christmas Wish List

 The weekend is over...

...but I'm on VACATION!!!!!!!!!! WooHoo!

I'm chillin' in Roanoke with the parents for the week.  I'm relaxing, blogging, reading, watching television. I am going to the gym.  When I got home on Saturday my brother's dog awaited me with licks and paws.  He's such a sweetie!

It's that time of year when we start putting together Christmas lists.  I can't remember the last time I actually made a list of things I wanted (besides the list of have for the kind of man I want).  I'm a simple girl and there's not much that I could think of that I'd want.  I'm not big into jewelry or fashion.  I'm buying myself a television on Black Friday, so no need to put that on a list.  I put my thinking cap on and this is what I came up with . . .

1. Lil Bub 2014 Calendar
You can get it at Urban Outfitters.  Ever since I discovered this cute little kitty on Facebook I just couldn't get enough.  She's so cute!

2. Bellman and Black
I actually found this book on the blog I Believe in Story.  It sounds really interesting and right up my alley!

3. Snow on Christmas Day
Or Thanksgiving Day!  Mom and Dad are coming up to NOVA for Christmas this year.  They are staying in Old Town Alexandria.  It would be so lovely for it to snow!  Plus, I love snow :) Looking at it...not so much being in it.  oh, and Snowmen!

4. Blood Diamond and/or Rear Window
Blood Diamond is a Leo movie that I love, but don't have yet.  Rear Window is one of my all time favorite movies!  I would love to have both of them.

5.  Ryan Gosling A Boyfriend
Now, I know this one is up to me and it will happen when the time is right and the right man comes along.  As long as I can find a man that loves the way I wear yoga pants all day long, then he's alright in my book! :)  Of course I'll have to revert back to the list I referred to earlier.

What is on your Christmas list this year?  Anything fun and exciting?  Anything you really want or really need?

Linking up with Lipgloss and Crayons & Still Being Molly for Funday Monday
still being [molly]

High 5 for Friday

Happy Friday! Catching Fire comes out today.  Who already has tickets?  I'm heading home to Roanoke for a Thanksgiving Vacation - a much needed vacation!  I should probably start packing!

I hope you had a great week.  Here are some highlights from mine ~ 

1.  I was telling a friend at work about PicMonkey and how you can edit photos with it.  She loves Grumpy Cat, but you all know I love Lil Bub. PicMonkey has holiday themes, so I made a Christmas Bub!

2.  This week we had our monthly luncheon at work and our lounge manager, Keith, made a big Thanksgiving lunch for everyone.  Soooo much food!  It was delish!

3.  I made my bed everyday this week.  I'm very proud of that :)

4.  As I'm driving to work I hear this rattling sound.  Come to find out it's my glove compartment.  The only way to get rid of the sound while I'm driving to have the glove compartment open.  So, that's how I'm driving to work now :)  I'm so my father's daughter!

5.  I lost 3 pounds this week. I didn't work out, but I did as well as I could with my calories and I didn't drink at all (alcohol that is).  Yay for me!  The goal was to lose 3 pounds a week.  I'm hoping to lose even more than that next week since I'll be home in Roanoke and probably working out everyday because there's not much else to do there! I'm aiming for at least a 5 pound weight loss next week.  I'll let you know!

I'm linking up with Lauren Elizabeth for this High Five For Friday
Carolina Charm | The Good Life Blog for 5 on Friday
The Diary of a Real Housewife for Friday Favorites

Have a great weekend!


A little bit of Instagram

I thought I would share a little of my Instagrams with you.  I'm not a photographer by any means and sometimes my posts are weird, but that's the world we live in right?  Check it out some of my favorite pictures that I've posted recently. . . 

 The other day I was waiting for the elevator in the morning.  When the door opened there were two pairs of jeans just hanging there.  Weird!

This empty file folder is where I kept all the contract files for DNV.  It's empty now..yay!

This was early (5am) one morning when I went to the gym.  I really like going to the gym in the morning.  I need to start doing that again.  With this next week off I'm going to work out every day.  No excuses!

This is the beautiful fall view from my apartment window.  I love fall with the changing leaves.  So pretty!  I also love that I can see the Washington Monument (far right) and the National Catherdral (waaaaaay out there sort of in the middle) from my window.  I can also see the Capitol Building, but it's not in the picture.

My friend Kathleen joined me in Arlington one night with some co-workers.  They were there to watch the Ohio State vs Penn State game.  Me and Kathleen were more interested in the Red Sox vs. Cardinals game.

 I love this movie! Every girl wants a Lloyd Dobler :)  This was also my first BluRay purchase.

This is Sir Butters, my brother's Bernese Mountain Dog.  He's such a sweetie.  He's a massive dog though!  He'll be at my parents house when I go home this weekend, so I need to make sure to wear Butters-Proof clothing!

Good Ol' Starbucks.  When mom came up to visit in October she was in desperate need of Starbucks.  We went to the one inside my Target.  They spelled my name right!

I love the Jasmine Green Tea from Trader Joe's.  When mom and I went to NYC and had High Tea at the Plaza I drank their Jasmine Green Tea and I loved it.  I was so happy to find it at Trader Joe's.

Oh Instagram!  I try to use it more often than not.  I like the different filters that we can edit pictures with.  If you want to follow me you can go here *MY INSTAGRAM*.

Currently I'm...

I haven't done a post like this is good while, so I thought I would throw one into the mix. 


Currently I'm . . .

Reading | Fly Away, by Kristen Hannah.  This is the sequel to Firefly Lane. I just started it last night and it's already fantastic.  I'm also reading By The Time You Read This, by Lola Jaye.  It's about a manual that a father wrote for his daughter right before he died when he was 30.  She is now 12 and receiving the manual for the first time!

Writing | Cards to send out wishing those that I love a Happy Thanksgiving and this blog post :)

Listening | The Holiday on the television.

Thinking | what I'm going to do while I'm home in Roanoke all next week. I'm thinking there will be lots of reading, writing, and some much needed exercise! I'm also thinking that tomorrow is pay day and I have to pay bills. Yuck!

Smelling | the yummy Glade candles buring in my kitchen...apple cinnamon!

Eating | apple and peanut butter...it's a yummy dessert.

Drinking | water...it's good for you :)

Wishing | it was already the weekend because I would be headed home!

Hoping | that I can find an affordable television on Black Friday (should I finance one???).

Wearing | my pink Ann Taylor Loft sweat pants and an Aids Walk t-shirt.

Loving | the chilly weather we're having here in northern Virginia right now.

Wanting | ...I'm not sure what I'm wanting right now.

Needing | a vacation!  Yay for Thanksgiving "break."

Feeling | relieved!  I have officially turned over DNV to the new service manager.  WooHoo!

Clicking | through Bloglovin' and Pinterest

Linking up with Because Shanna Said So for Random Wednesdays

I broke down and gave in...

I couldn't help it.  I needed it and I wanted it and there was no stopping me!  It started on Sunday night.  I had a headache all day that I just couldn't get rid of.  After 3 doses of Tylenol every 4 hours, lots and lots of water, and even a nap the headache was still there.  I needed something to make me feel better.  So, I gave in to my guilty pleasure in hope that it would help take my headache away...

I couldn't help myself! I had to.  I know I know...  Thanksgiving isn't even here yet and that's usually a rule that I adhere to.  I had been wanting to watch A Christmas Story for a week or so and I got the DVD out and put it in the player and pressed play!  I love this movie!  I didn't stop there...

I proceeded to watch my FAVORITE Christmas movie Christmas in Connecticut.  Barbara Stanwyck is fantastic and I love her in this movie.  If you haven't seen it (or heard of it) get on it now!  It's such a funny movie.  It's a classic Christmas movie.

I will try to not watch anymore until after next weekend (I say as I have Love Actually playing in the background right now).  :-)

Glossy Blonde

How has 2013 treated you?

2013 has been one of the most challenging years that I have had in a very long time.  There are things that happened this year that I never thought I would have to go through or deal with.  I never thought I would have to hire a lawyer.  Thank goodness I did!  He was able to make a deal with the prosecutor and my traffic violation was brought down to improper driving. Then in August everything at work changed and then in September it all got so much harder.  The work stuff is winding down now.  They've hired a new Conference Service Manager at DNV, so I will be back to Helix itself again this week.  I hand DNV over to her on Tuesday.  Just in time for Thanksgiving!

Oh, did I mention that I turned 30 this year!

This year has taken a toll on me emotionally and physically.  The emotional part I'm figuring out one day at a time and getting better each day.  The physical part, however, is a bit tougher.  I think the last time I gave you a Shape Up Update was back in September.  I was at 151 pounds and motivated.  That has changed quite a bit. I'm not ready to share what I weigh now; let's just say I have hit my heaviest yet.  Shortly after that update is when the work stuff got tougher.  I made it to the gym every once in a while, but I mostly just came home and crashed.  Working at DNV involved a lot of happy hours too.  It wasn't a "requirement" or anything.  The DNV team was my first Kimpton family and they will always have a special place in my heart.  Plus, they're a ton of fun to hang out with after work.

As the year comes to a close I begin to think of the year ahead and what my resolutions/goals will be, but also what I'm thankful for.  There are several things that I am Thankful for this year.  I'm trying to keep up on the Thankful 30 on Facebook.  I have some very reasonable resolutions for next year (I'm starting now, though).

Actually Hit My Goal Weight
I weighed Sunday morning and my heart sank.  I have made a plan - a 30 Day Challenge so to speak - to help motivate myself.  Hopefully it will work.  I also have a workout buddy.  My friend Marina and I work together and discovered that we also go to the same gym.  We live pretty close together, so we are starting out going to the gym together once a week.

Get Out Of Debt For Good
I have mapped this one out.  I will be out of debt by the end of 2014.  It's going to be a frugal year!

Figure Out My Next Move
Lately I have been thinking about going back to school.  I have also been thinking about moving somewhere.  I don't think I want to be in northern Virginia/D.C. for more than another year or so.  Nothing will happen until my debt is clear, but I need to start thinking about what I want to do.  If I want to go back to school, then I need to get moving; figure out what I'm going to study and start working on that.

That's really it for resolutions/goals.  The more I seem to make, the less I accomplish.  These are a few things that I have been working towards and thinking about for a while now and I'm going to make them my total focus in 2014.

How was your 2013?  Have you started thinking about the year ahead?  What are you resolutions/goals for 2014?  

 Linking up for Funday Monday with Molly @ still being [molly] , Carly @ Lipgloss & Crayons , Stephanie from Mrs D's Corner and Lindsay from Pursuit of Pink!

Sunday Social ~ All About 4's

Welcome to Sunday.  Have you had a good weekend?  Mine has been quite relaxing.  It's going to be a busy week at work and next week I'm off!  I'm taking a little Thanksgiving vacation.  Now, off to the races.  This week's Sunday Social is all about 4's.  Check it out!
Sunday Social
1. Name 4 jobs you've had in your life.
Ann Taylor | Red Robin | Regal Movie Theater | Mel's Drive-In
2. Name 4 movies you would watch over and over.
First Wives Club | You've Got Mail | Mystic Pizza | Sleepless in Seattle

3. Name 4 places you have lived.
California | Pennsylvania | Iowa | Massachusetts

4.  Name 4 of your favorite foods.
Mac & Cheese | Pizza | Bacon | Lasagna

5. Name 4 things you always carry with you.
Cell Phone | Vaseline Chapstick | Planner | Wallet

6. Name 4 places you have been on vacation.
Vermont | Bahamas | San Francisco | NYC

How about you?  Any favorite 4's?  Let me know in the comments below!

~*Have a great Sunday*~

High Five For Friday

As always ~ Yay for Friday!  I hope you had a great week and are looking forward to the weekend.  Anyone have snow yet?  I'm just loving this chilly weather!  Here are some top moments from my week.  Share with me in the comments below some of your top moments!

1.  Over the weekend I made Apple Crisp.  It's super easy and super yummy.  I had all these Macintosh apples in my fridge and I needed to get rid of them, so I thought I would bake something.  I took the Apple Crisp into work for my fellow teammates to enjoy.  It didn't last long!

2.  My brother made sure to let me know that this week is National Brothers Week.  Of course I'm going to let the whole world know how much I love and appreciate my brother! Love you Jacob! 

3. I was browsing on Facebook and found this picture of my college professor, Ed Gero.  He's a very well known actor in the Washington DC area.  He was a company member of the Shakespeare Theater for a very long time.  This Holiday Season he is reprising his role as Ebeneezer Scrooge in Ford Theater's A Christmas Carol.  Mom and Dad are coming up here for Christmas this year, so we are going to go see it! 
Ed in 1989
Ed as Ebeneezer Scrooge

4.  I was feeling silly yesterday, but having a really good curly hair day!  I had to take a picture (warning - no makeup!) 

5.  I have finished book #15.  Only 10 left and I've got 6 weeks to go.  That means I need to read 1.67 books a week :) Hahahahaha! I need to see if  I have some short books that I haven't read yet!
This book was really interesting.  It's different, that's for sure.  Check it out!

Well, that's it for the week.  I hope you have a wonderful weekend and I'll see you next time.  
I'm linking up with Lauren Elizabeth for today's High Five For Friday!