Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays, yo!

I thought about writing a long blog about Christmas, but I figured that would be boring. So here's just a recap of what's been happening in the great state of Washington:

-It's been snowing a ton, and I love it!
-Aaron finally came home yesterday after working in Montana for 3 weeks!
-I have an interview in January for a teaching position in Texas for next school year
-Elphie is a nut case, as usual, and still loves every minute of being out in the snow, but now that the snow is getting deeper, she hasn't been enjoying going to the bathroom... (but it think it's hilarious)
-Aaron still needs to do all of his holiday shopping TODAY...as in Christmas Eve...awesome.
-I've figured out how to do selective colorization to my photos, which I think is the coolest thing since sliced bread!
-My Ipod's wheel doesn't work anymore, which makes me a very sad panda.
-I picked out my first real Christmas tree yesterday. For those of you who don't know, I've never had a real tree. We were a very green family growing up...

That's about all I've got for now. Happy holidays everyone! Love and miss you all :)

An example of some of my sweet Photoshop skills...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

SNOW!



It finally snowed here in my part of Washington! I'm super-excited because it's about an inch, if that, so its not bad to drive in, but its still pretty :) I'm also excited because I get to laugh at how silly everyone around here is acting because its snowing just a little bit. Last night at work, big fat snowflakes start falling very slowly, and one of my managers told me about because he knew I was from Ohio and I like snow. Well, it was really nothing, but everyone else that came through the store was complaining about it snowing and how it was cold (well, duh). Some of my co-workers informed me that people are going to start putting chains on their tires, driving about 25 mph on the freeway and most people will start stocking up on water, firewood and batteries and "hunker down". Apparently people around here want the snow to stay in the mountains. After work, I drove home very cautiously, in fear of some crazy Washingtonian will be driving too slow, or will think they can drive however they want because they have 4 wheel drive (IF they even know how to use it...eeek!). Of course I made it home safely and went to sleep. Well, this morning I was rudely awoken to my pup barking at kids sledding down the sides of the road. Since there was barely an inch of snow, the sleds were just grinding on the pavement, and Miss Elphie did NOT enjoy that one bit. 

But she sure did love seeing snow for the first time! I took her for a walk this morning, and she LOVED the snow! She was very unsure about the white stuff on the ground at first, but once she licked some up, she decided it was good enough to roll around in. After rolling around, then trying to chase the snow I was throwing, we went on a walk and Elphie barely picked her nose up out of the snow. She was very disappointed to come in the house after the walk and I'm not sure if she's really depressed about not being able to play in the snow longer, or if she was really tired. Maybe I'll just have to turn her into a sled dog! :) 




Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Eat, Sleep, Blog

Hello, hello everyone! Long time, no blog. Sorry about the lull, but there hasn't been a whole lot going on aside from job hunting and sleeping. But after an email from one of my favorites, I've decided that I need to get back to my blogging!! So here we go!

OCD in dogs. You're probably thinking, "Yeah right. There's no way a dog can be obsessive compulsive." Well ladies and gentlemen, meet my puppy, Elphie.
Elphie likes to be OCD with her food (like dog, like owner?). If the kibble in her bowl is not level or flattened out when it is given to her, the crazy little dog will flatten all the kibble to her liking. "How did you notice such a small quirk?", you might ask. Well, Aaron and I first noticed when the big dogs' food was spilled into piles and clumps on the floor one afternoon. About a half hour later, we looked to see how much of it our little dog had gotten her paws on. Turns out, Elphie lined up every piece of kibble that didn't get gobbled up by the big dogs into 3, flat, and almost exactly even rows. After that incident, we kept an eye on the pup the next couple of times she ate some food, and sure enough, she flattened out the food in her bowl before she'd taken a bite. I then decided to do some research on Obsessive Compulsive Disorder in dogs to see if there was anything we should be watching out for. Turns out OCD in dogs is caused by stress, anxiety or boredom. Luckily Elphie's compulsions are not aggressive (like digging, barking at nothing, biting her feet, etc.) This worried me a bit because I didn't want my pup to be so bored that her last resort was to compulsively flatten her food! So of course my solution has been more walks and more playing (it never seems to end!), and it turns out that she still flattens out her food before she eats. I'm going to leave Elphie's diagnosis at weirdo with a chance of turning into full-blown OCD if she isn't played with and walked until her stubby little nubs can't walk any more! So what if my dog has a few idiosyncrasies? No one is perfect and it's free entertainment! To go along with her food oddity, my little pup is scared of the heater! Any time the heater is on in the room, she refuses to go near it. Elphie loves her squeaky bone, but she doesn't love it enough to run after it if I throw it in front of the heater. What a silly and crazy little pup! 

Good news on the job front has finally come through for Aaron! He is working for a wind turbine company as a Wind Turbine Commissioner. He's getting paid well to work on wind energy, of which he's a big advocate, which is awesome! Except that right now he's in Montana doing his job :( For now, he's working there and getting paid to live in a hotel until the 23rd of December, which was hard at first for him while he was going through orientation and not actually getting to work on the turbines. Now, he's really enjoying getting to finally work on the turbines and working long days, which doesn't make it any easier for me, but I'm glad that he's enjoying the work more. After the holidays and New Year, he'll be going back to the same place in Montana for a few weeks and then may get moved to a different location, which is yet to be determined. In the meantime, I am still chillin' in Washington with my pup, and working at Old Navy. My job hunt, has not been going quite as well. I've heard next to nothing, no matter how late I stay up applying to jobs. To make matters worse, the economy isn't helping me work more hours at Old Navy. I've been sent home early twice this week because we haven't been getting enough business. At one point during my shift yesterday, there was not a single customer in the store and this lack of customers lasted for a good 20 minutes. At least I get some hours, right? At least enough to make car payments...

Whhaaatt?? Did I say car payments? YOU BET!
Mark this down in history, folks. I have a new car. Now don't have a heart attack. Breathe...breathe...breathe...

It's an '06 Ford Freestyle, so it's technically a crossover, but it looks like a wagon. Very spacious with fold-down seats, leather interior, 6-CD disk changer, rear sensors, Midnight Blue, power windows, power locks, AIR CONDITIONING, and last but certainly not least, cup holders. It's nicer and newer than any car I'd ever imagine having at age 22. Nothing fancy, which is why I like it, but it's my new whip, so hooray for me! (And I sure hope Ron is super-proud of me for taking his advice and getting a car instead of "fancy gadgets" with my first couple paychecks. See, I did listen!) I still haven't come up with a name for the car though, so if you have any ideas, send 'em my way!

In between playing with the dog, missing my boyfriend, working and paying off my car, I've actually been reading, believe it or not! I didn't work today, so I stayed up last night finishing the book Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, which turned out to be very good! A friend recommended it to me last year and I didn't get a chance to pick up a copy and read it until I got settled here in WA. Super-condensed synopsis: this woman get a divorce and travels to Italy, India, and Indonesia to find balance and happiness in her life. She begins her journey with practicing yoga, which I've always wanted to try, and after finishing the book, REALLY makes me want to try a session at the YMCA. Maybe once the New Year starts, eh? I suppose yoga on Wii Fit will do until then :)

Here are some random pictures from the past few weeks that you might enjoy. Until next time...
Elphie practicing puppy yoga

She had way too much to eat one night...

Mi amor

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Create your own superhero!


I stumbled upon this on the Marvel sight a few minutes ago and voila! I have created my own superhero. She's pretty bomb and this is what I'd look like if I was a superhero...oh wait. I already am!


Sunday, November 9, 2008

Colbert Renames Canton, OH

Hello everyone! I just wanted to share this funny video from the Colbert Report that I found on my friend's Facebook page about Canton, OH. Believe it or not, the President elect visited Canton and gave a speech there, which is big for that little town! And lucky for us, Colbert has graciously renamed the city and has demoted it from being the "good" Canton to the crappy Canton. So enjoy!:

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Big Day

Well hello, hello friends! So much has been happening in the past few days that it's been hard to keep up! 

As I mentioned before, Aaron and I went to see Pride and Glory on Sunday and it was an alright film. Edward Norton was fantastic, as usual, but the rest of the movie was just alright. It was pretty violent and a bit far-fetched. Basically, an NYPD has police officers who are making outside deals with druggies for some extra bling on the side. I know its happened before in rela life and unfortunately, it may still be going on in some places, but the most appalling and far-fetched part of the movie was Colin Farrell threatening to take a hot iron to a baby's face if the child's father didn't comply with Farrell's demands. This was immediately after Farrell punched the dude's wife in the face and grabbed the baby out of her arms. I'm still appalled thinking about. I like babies and I've been around quite a few in the past few years and to even think of this happening just makes sick. Ugh. That is all I have to say about that movie.

On some lighter notes:

As we all should know by now, our new president-elect is Barack Obama. I'm very happy to see a huge turnout from the eligible citizens exercising their right to vote! What a wonderful time to be an American. Hopefully, Obama will live up to what he promised. Congrats to Obama and Biden!


In other news, Halloween has now passed and so almost every store is bringing out their Christmas merchandise and the television is starting to show more and more commercials about Christmas. Typically this also appalls me beyond belief, but for some reason, it hasn't bothered me too much...yet. I was driving to work last week listening to my Ipod on shuffle when Mariah Carey's "All I Want For Christmas is You" came up. My first instinct was to reach over and change the song, but I decided to listen to it anyway. No biggie. Then later that day Aaron and I went to Wal-Mart to get some puppy supplies and were meandering around the store when we stumbled upon a ton of artificial Christmas trees in the home and garden section. This got me in a bit of the Christmas mood which I've somehow maintained since then. This could all change once Old Navy has Christmas music on all the time when I'm working or when customers are too busy with the holiday stuff to be polite...but for now, I'm looking forward to the holidays. Once I get closer to the holidays and I get a few paychecks in the bank, I really want to get a Charlie Brown Christmas Tree!

Good old Charlie Brown. They're sold at Urban Outfitters and I can't wait to get one! Hooray :)

To add to my current holiday spirit, I was bored and searched YouTube for "Christmas Corgi" (I blame this on Aaron because started searching for videos of Corgis on YouTube a few days back and I've been checking nearly every day since for new videos because Corgis are the funniest dogs ever!) Looking through the search results, I came upon this video from 2007 of a dude's Christmas Corgi and I think its hilarious. 



My last and final note for today, is that Elphie has finally learned to consistently speak on command! I'm so proud of my pup and once I get some video of her speaking, I'll post it!

Happy Wednesday! 
Until next time friends...

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Spookalicious!

Happy belated Halloween!
Happy All Saints Day!
Happy All Souls Day! (Feliz Dia de los Muetros)

Due to a lack of funds, Aaron, Elphie and I did not have the opportunity to dress up and Trick-or-Treat this week but we did get to carve pumpkins and snag a bag of Almond Joys from the grocery store to munch on. And of course, we enjoyed ourselves anyway! After visiting a pumpkin patch with Aaron's mom and brother, we carved pumpkins (Mine is the pirate ship, Aaron's pumpkin is the one puking), and baked some pumpkin seeds. Elphie likes to chew on the pumpkin seeds but she hasn't gotten the hang of eating them without dropping the seed on the floor 1000+ times. She did get in the spirit of the holiday, so it's all good in my eyes :)
In my quest to continue my Halloween weekend adventure, I ventured to the library today and grabbed some Spanish books. One is a text book so I can brush up on my vocab and tenses, and the other is an actual book: Don't Know Much About History: Everything You Need to Know About American History But Never Learned...but in Spanish. I've never read and entire book in Spanish before and I figure this will be something mentally challenging to keep mind post-colligate mind sharp, and it will greatly help with my job hunt. "Why yes, I've read an entire book in Spanish. An extra grand to start? of course I accept!" --In my dreams! Anyway, it couldn't hurt.
ALSO, today I checked out a new vehicle at the Ford dealership...a Jeep. They're checking with the bank tomorrow and I just might be able to drive away with the rig tomorrow. If not, I just might be able to have it by the end of the week. AWESOME! (Thank goodness for auto loans...) I forgot how much freedom a car provides a person. I also forgot how expensive a car can be when you add insurance, an in-state license plates, gasoline and such can be when you add it all up. I'm gonna be working hard for my money the next few years, I can tell ya that!
To finish out the weekend's Spookalicious adventures, Aaron and I are going to see the new film, Pride and Glory, with Edward Norton, tomorrow. I'm a big fan of Norton, especially since Fight Club, so I'm excited to see how he is in Pride and Glory. Aside from that, All Souls Day will be a relaxing day :) I thought about attempting to make some Pan de Muerto (bread of the dead) but we'll see if I actually get around to it. If you get the chance, I recommend it. Its a very sweet and soft bread, at least from what I remember of high school Spanish class. Anyway, here's the recipe, so let me know how it turns out if you dare make it!
Well everyone, it's time to retire. Don't forget to turn your clocks back! Until next time friends...






Saturday, October 25, 2008

Tooth Fairy

Elphie is losing her puppy teeth!!
At first I thought she has a splinter in her tongue by the way she was licking her teeth, but it turns out, shes losing teeth left and right. I noticed some of her bottom teeth gone the other day and yesterday one of her teeth fell out onto the ground while we were playing around. My pup is growing up so fast *sniffle...sniffle*
Along with the excitement of losing her puppy teeth, Elphie has learned to fetch! Hooray for puppies and fetching! Thats all I've got for now. 

Until next time...





Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Run Elphie, Run

Some video footage of my pup running...look at those tiny legs go!!

video

Monday, October 20, 2008

Gap Inc., here I come!

I got a part time job!...At Old Navy!

I know, I know. It's not a full-time job with all the perks, but its a job nonetheless. I start with orientation on Wednesday and some training on Friday. I'll being doing mostly Logistics, which includes unpacking shipments of merchandise, setting up the sales floor, and replacing signage. I'll also be doing some Customer Service (working the register, fitting room, sales floor, etc.) typically on the weekends, but mostly Logistics during the week. And shifts are going to be very limited for a few weeks until the holiday season picks up, but its something. And if I do well enough, then I may be asked to stay for the regular season. Sweet life!

Until then, Im gonna keep looking for more work! And train my puppy...Oh the life.

Until next time...

Friday, October 17, 2008

Elphie 101


My dog is probably the cutest animal I have ever encountered in my life. After being a first-time dog owner for a week now, I've learned a few more things about my dog that are cute, frustrating, and hilarious. 

*Elphie will pee whenever she's scared. This is is categorized as hilarious until you're holding her when she's scared and then she pees on you. (That happened to me twice yesterday...) Then this is frustrating.
*Elphie is all bark, no game. If she's running after you in the yard, all you have to do is chase her and she'll give up and hunker down until you've passed over her. This happens with other dogs, people, and pretty much everything that is bigger than she is. But at least she has gusto! (cute)
*My dog and I love to sleep. I'll wake up after sleeping for 8 or 9 hours, take Elphie out to piddle, and then hop back in bed for another hour or two and Elphie is right there with me. What a loyal dog. (very cute)
*Elphie has become much more vocal now that's she's been around me for a while. Whenever she yawns, doesn't want to go to bed yet, or whenever she hears something she doesn't like, I know about it. The yawning is super-cute. But at bedtime when she claws at her cage and whimpers or when Aaron whistle terribly, she barks or grumbles. (hilarious!)
*ELPHIE'S TOUNGE IS CRAZY!!!! Whenever she yawns, it just crazy long and i just can't help but laugh every time she does. she'll sometimes even lick the floor on accident if she yawns while she's laying down. (hilarious)
*Elphie is not a big fan of hard and crunchy puppy food yet. I learned this after I bought a big bag of kibble for her. Aaron had to idea to wet down the puppy food with water and give it to her like that, and she LOVES it!  But the way he got this idea was from watching the pup take pieces of kibble and put them in her water bowl and then eat them. We thought she was just playing in her water bowl (which was funny on its own) but that fact that my dog was smart enough to take the food and soften it on her own, makes me love my dog even more! 

And the cute and hilarious clearly outweigh the frustrating, which is wonderful! I love having a dog :)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I thoroughly enjoy photo booth!





Just some fun with Photo Booth on my computer while taking a break from job hunting

Sunday, October 12, 2008

I hear there's an old windmill around here...

A friend of mine showed me this link: Windmill

Pretty cool. A little scary. Glad that hasn't happened when I've been around windmills...

Saturday, October 11, 2008

10 Things I've Learned About Elphie






1.) She's a little piglet. Elphie will devour her food within seconds of the bowl touching the ground.
2.) Her tummy does not like Wendy's food. Today we took her with us to Wendy's and let her taste some of our food (chicken nugget, beef, etc) and soon enough it came back up on the floor of Aaron's rig. 
3.) She looks like a hot dog when she stretches out on the couch to take a nap
4.) Elphie is a cuddle bug to the MAX!
5.) She's funny to watch when she runs. Little legs + long body = hilarious sight
6.) Elphie can fit in mailboxes.
7.) She is not a big fan of the flash on my camera, but I love taking pictures-especially of her. She'll learn to love it.
8.) I'm going to need some good winter clothing because my pup LOVES the outdoors. If she doesn't want to go in the house yet, she does not budge one bit. 
9.) Elphie has STINKY farts. No joke. it's gross.
10.) Last and certainly not least, Elphie loves me!! She follows me around wherever I go...so, SO adorable!

Friday, October 10, 2008

A crazy 2 weeks





The past 2 weeks have been spent venturing around the state of Oregon. Our first stop was to visit Aaron's grandparents. After a week of farm life I learned to knit, saw deer in the front yard, got to pet some cows, ride around on a 3-wheeler and got a TON of home-cooking. After a week in the country, we headed to Aaron's hometown where we right now. We've been hanging out with friends and the most exciting news of all....I GOT A PUPPY!!!!!!! I've been wanting a dog for who knows how long and there happened to be an ad in the classifieds for Corgi puppies....and now I own one of those pups :)
Her name is Elphie and she's 15 weeks old. We've only had her for a day and potty training is not the easiest thing in the world, but she'll learn. 

Until next time...

PS-Taking a self-portrait with a puppy is a difficult task...

Monday, September 29, 2008

Mt. Rainier & Pike's Place Market






Hokay, so. Here is Mt. Rainier and Pike's Market. Those are some sweet pictures you might say....

Anyway, my first full day in the state of Washington was spent getting carsick on my way up a twisty mountain. The place is call Mt. Rainier and it's a really awesome place to visit. The mountain was pretty foggy while we were journeying up and I got pretty carsick, but the sun was shining and I got to take some really neat pictures, so the whole day wasn't a bust! It was really fun to just get out every 10 minutes or so and see a waterfall or new view from the mountain. And since I take lots and lots of pictures, I've decided to get a photobucket account where I can upload ALL my pictures for y'all to see :) I'll still post some pictures in the blog, but if you're interested in seeing more, just go to the side bar and there will be a link and you can check out the other pics :)
Yesterday was spent in downtown Seattle getting all my checked baggage (all of it got here safe and sound!!) and exploring Pike's Place Market. I had some cheese curds for the first time (also known as squeaky cheese-very tasty!), saw some really cool jewelry, saw the first Starbucks, went by the restaurant that's in Sleepless in Seattle, and got to feed some Seagulls outside the restaurant on Pier 54 (or somewhere around there...). Today has been spend buying insurance, job hunting, and attempting to consolidate my loans...GROSS!!! But in the next couple of days Aaron and I are going to be visiting his grandparents in Oregon so I'll have more tales to tell then :)

Until next time...

Photo Captions:
-Mt. Rainier (ps-this mountain can be seen pretty wherever I drive around here...it's pretty wonderful!!)
-Waterfall on the way up the mountain
-At the top of a waterfall
-HUUUGE spiny lobster tail at Pike's Market...I wish I could have caught one this summer
-Feeding a seagull :)

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Train Ride + Seattle







So let's begin at 5:30 am on the 24th.
Aaron and I arrive at the Amtrak and start taking our 5 totes and 1 box to get checked, only to find out that the train taking us from St. Louis to Chicago is not a train that carries checked luggage. After much pleading, the luggage guy said he'd send our stuffs on the next luggage train coming through the STL. After re-adjusting the bags so they all weighed under 50 lbs., re-taping the totes and getting out our carry-on bags, we hopped on the train at 6:30 am and arrived in Chi-town an hour late because we had to stop several times for freight trains to pass by us. No worries though; we had an hour to spare before climbing aboard the EMPIRE BUILDER!!! (sweet name for a train, eh?)
At 2:45 pm, we got on our double-decker train and begin our trip to Seattle. There isn't really a whole lot to say about the train ride. We did not pay the extra money for a sleeper car, but  sleeping in our coach seats wasn't nearly as bad as I had imagined. The first night I was extremely tired from getting up the morning before and from the excitement of a new adventure/worrying about waking up in time to make the train. But the second night was not comfortable or restful. When I wasn't sleeping, I read the book, The Time Traveler's Wife. (very good tale about timeless love...), chilled in the observation car, had a meal in the dining car or took SWEET PICTURES!!! (which as you can see, are posted).
After arriving in Seattle on the 26th, Aaron's mom picked us up from the train station and we took a little driving tour through Seattle. The Space needle was pretty cool looking, Pike's Market was nice and so was the art scattered around the city. The plethora of museums around Seattle was very exciting, but I was sad to learn that many of them require a 20 dollar bill to enter (NOTHING like St. Louis museums...). We didn't really have time to walk around the city, but there was talk of heading to the city tomorrow, so hopefully we'll have a better chance to check out the city then.
The rest of the night we spend getting settled in and today we visited Mt. Rainier and took a ton of pictures (it was gorgeous!!! but I'll post those in the next blog...)
And that's all I've got to say about that...

Picture info (no necessarily in order):
Sunrise in North Dakota. Hey!!...
Me lookin' out the window at the pretty scenery
Farmland in Montana
Sunrise in Rockies somewhere in Washington
The Space Needle
The Cat Whisperer in Pikes Market (that one is for you Maria!)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Here's the scoop...

Like I stated before, I'm stuck in St. Louis for a few days until my adventure gets up and running again. So here's what happened:

Aaron and I got ready to leave Saturday morning. We had originally planned to leave Friday, but I was definitely NOT finished packing. We had taken my car in to Midas to get it checked out, so we figured the car was good to go. We packed up the car and headed out of town and were enjoying our drive. About 60 miles out, near Bowling Green, Aaron noticed something smelled funny and we needed to make a bathroom stop anyway. Aaron checked the transmission and the dipstick was bone dry so he put in a bit of transmission fluid and it was like pouring onto the ground. Wonderful. We then realized Midas suckered us and took my money! The Midas people told us the tranmission was nothing to be worried about, but the tie-rod and barrings were a MAJOR safety concern (the guy wouldn't shut up about how important it was to our safety to get these things fixed), so we trusted them (silly us) and got screwed in the process. THANKFULLY I have AAA and we got a tow. 

After much brainstorming, Aaron and I have decided to take a train out to Seattle, on which we'll be leaving tomorrow...at 6:35am. We'll be spending about 2.5 days on the train to get out there, but it's much less stressful and much less expensive. AND I've never ridden a train before, so I'm pretty stoked! And dont worry...I'll be taking many pictures :)

Until next time...

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Curses!






Since I'm stuck in St. Louis for a few more days with a broken car...I've decided to post some fun pictures of my visit with Ben-jamin and Maria. Not much else to say aside from CURSES!!! AND that I love these people :)