Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Truth Tuesday: Alphabet Version

So, here's the story from A - Z.. You want to get with me? You better listen carefully.. If you rapped that a la Spice Girls style, we can totally be friends.

I remembered what I started last week... so here's my second stab at it, and I figured.. since it's about me, why not make it really about me and go through the alphabet......

Here's some of me... From A - Z..

Alpha Gamma Delta alum
Bubble Bather 
Cheerleader... I was one... now I coach.. but most importantly, if you're in my life in whatever capacity, I'll be one of your biggest fans. 
Drama Queen.... of the thespian nature.. IRL drama isn't on my agenda... but stage time sure is. 
Epicurian... I'm a foodie. End.of.story.
Freelancer.. writer and voice over artist.
Goat Cheese Hater... that shiz is gross. Smells like rank socks and tastes like how goats smell.
Hopeless Romantic but won't admit it so how about Hairless Cat Adorer...I know they are ugly..inside out cats...but they feel like peaches, love to snuggle, like baths, can wear sweaters... Like I want one... and one day... I will have one and will name it Wookie... oh, the irony,
 Inclement Weather Scaredy Cat -  my friends and family know that the odds of me getting out with a tornado watch are pretty slim.. once I drove home with the tornado sirens going off.. I called my Dad in a meeting and I was 50 shades of freaked out and talking like, "I'm going to Oz." I can be a bit dramatic.. see D. 
Jetsetter... wish I could say frequent... but my jet doesn't run that often. Takes time and dolla dolla billz, ya'll.   
Keeper of Lists
Laugh-o-holic
Master of sarcasm, bullshit and sass
Nautical Obsessed... I think that's pretty obvious.
Old Hollywood Movie Fan or a over-analyzer... I tend to think too much.
Philanthropist..kindness goes a long way people.
Quatrefoil fan
Rosacea Sufferer
Starbucks Addict... Drink of Choice:  Iced caramel white chocolate mocha, but with no ice. Fill that puppy up with milk. yum yum
Thoughtful... I'm big on sentimental value.. I would much rather DIY a gift from the heart or give a meaningful gift or letter. It's the little things that truly mean so much.
Unique. I'm like a Limited Edition... one of one.
Vanilla Coke Lover...especially Sonic's version.
Wedding Planner... one of my weddings was on "Platinum Weddings." I really, really, really miss it.
Xanthippe... Okay... so I'm not actually this.. because it means a wretched nagging wife, or shrew..and I'm not married, nor do I think I'm wretched.. but it's really fun to say.. It's pronounced San-thip-pee
Young at Heart... this I aim to always be
Zealous

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Friday, April 25, 2014

Five. Cinco. Fiiiiive. 5 on Friday.


www.northcarolinacharm.com

So, here I am... with Friday almost over on the East Coast...just about over in Central Time...soon to be over on the West Coast and definitely over in some parts of the world..

1. Today, I found out that I will be employed at the same school where I currently teach. This is great news considering the fact that I just bought a house... In the world of teaching, if you aren't tenured that means you aren't guaranteed to a job. Tenured requirements vary from state to state, but typically you have to work for 5 years in one district before your job is safe. Otherwise, you're on pins and needles every year, wondering if you'll be back the next year). 

                                        


2. To go along with #1 - I got my schedule for next year.. I am over the moon - welcome ALL baby freshies and hello creative writing...

3. I'm heading to visit Mom and Gramman tomorrow and I'm excited to stop off in Elizabethtown and pick up this lovely beauty. I plan on recovering it with probably a Quatrefoil fabric, so am pretty excited about what the finished product will look like. I'll be sure to update. 

Talk about a Budget Buster... $8.00.. yes, you read that right. $8.00




 Quatrefoil is the actual term for what many of us think of as Moroccan tiles... Not sure yet on the color, but definitely love the pattern. 


4. I freelance on the side as part of my hustle (writing, PR, and Voice Over work) and I'm pumped to say that I just scored an awesome gig... I'm the new voice of a Driver's Ed course for the State of Nevada. Decorating money...yes, please.

5.  "Heartbreak Warfare" has ruffled the tail feathers of my week, but I'm so blessed by all the support and encouragement I've received from friends and family. I seriously am surrounded by some of the most incredible people IRL and in the blogsphere.. My bestie Kiki La Rue surprised me with this fantastic sign of sorts to hang behind my desk at school... and if you think about it... so, so, so true.. 

So true.... I'm mean let's think about... If Britney can get through 2007... I.. you...we... whomever is reading this, can make it through whatever their going through.. stay away from the buzz clippers and umbrellas.


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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

I Love to Write

I know, I know... I'm on a roll...posting multiple days in a row... I haven't posted this regularly since I first hopped on the blog train in January. What can I say? I guess it's starting to feel a little more like home here on the Create Post page. 

So...

I love to write (which is likely no surprise as we all share that common bond since the majority of blog readers are, in fact, bloggers themselves).  

And...

I'll be honest..I have the framework in place for a beachy chic-lit book.. I don't share that with many people, although I guess this sure is a way to let the cat out of the bag... perhaps one day I'll actually stop talking about it and will actually write it. Hell, who knows....maybe I'll even share a snippet on my blog. It's very Bridget Jones-esque, since I particularly love that style of writing. 

Anyways... It's no NY Times Best Seller's list...but..

I'm thinking of possibly doing, NaNoWriMo this year...I think it's on my 101 list.. clearly, I need to update that... It stands for National Novel Writing Month and occurs in November. Basically, you have a month to type a novel onto this website and then they send you some published copies of your novel if you finish.. 
 
Now...unfortunately, my job isn't safe yet, oh the joys of being a non-tenured teacher... I can't wait to not have to stress over my job #teacherprobs so I don't know yet if I'll be back at the high school where I'm currently teaching, but if I am...the current creative writing/poetry teacher is retiring, so fingers crossed that I'll be able to take that elective over. 

I love sharing my passion for writing, and I was going to save it for 5 for Friday but I'm excited to announce that I was accepted into a competitive summer program at a local university for three weeks in June. It's going to be an intensive few weeks that will allow me the chance to actually be creative and write, while also learning how to better teach writing to my students. I'll have to put some Master's course work on hold, but I think it'll be well worth it.

Writing is a daily part of my life. I regularly freelance on the side to make extra monies, because "I teach for the big bucks," said no teacher ever. I used to journal, and now I do so here on LUMUHAND. I write poetry (I'll blog about my song lyric poetry. It's so fun - you'll probably want to try it for a challenge!) It's so easy for me to pour my soul onto a page... the thoughts seem to take on a life of their own..  bottom line... I just really love to write.

Why do you write?


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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Tuesdays Are All About Truth

I'm a high school English teacher... so, naturally I have an affinity towards alliteration (In case you don't remember, that's the repetition of sounds/letters... you know like the Peter Piper tongue twisters) I like the way alliterative word pairs or phrases roll off the tongue, so I've decided that for how ever many Tuesdays I can remember I would reveal some truths about me...for Truth Tuesdays. It probably exists somewhere as a link-up, but I'm too lazy at the moment to Google.. and at this point,  typing two posts in a row with a broken heart is pretty spectacular. 

So, without further adieu..

1. I'll be 29 next month *cringe but I really don't like to flush the toilet if I get up in the middle of the night to pee. The sound of the flush scares me... I know it's ridiculous and gross to have to wake up to pee in a toilet... but seriously, I would much rather avoid flushing in the middle of the night if I can. The flush sounds so much scarier at 3am than it does at like 7am.

2. I'm obsessed with bubble baths. If I could take one every day, I would. Unfortunately, my current place doesn't have bath capabilities, but my new house has a jacuzzi tub. Hurry up move in date.... Philosophy makes THE best bubble bath. My current favorite, although probably lost forever since I left it in another zipcode, is their frosted animal cookie. It smells just like one of my favorite treat sans the calories. Talk about a win-win, unless you develop a craving and then of course, it could be problematic.

3. Tulips are my favorite flower. I adore them and would love to one day see a tulip field, perhaps in Netherlands or where ever else they may be blooming in abundance.

Any truths you'd like to reveal?

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Monday, April 21, 2014

Even blessings surround sadness.

When we experience heartache (for whatever reason, whether it be a break-up or a major disappointment) it's hard sometimes to stay focused on the positives. At the time, the heartache takes over center stage, and you want to cry your heart out, laying in your man-made salty pool of tears with a bevy of thoughts dancing around in your brain. It's in this state that you tend to forget about the other blessings in your life, instead focusing on how much you hurt.

Vulnerability is a scary concept, and for me, exposing that vulnerability is a struggle. Emotionally investing yourself in someone is risky - It's a 50/50. It either works out or it doesn't and while I choose to keep the details private, you can probably figure out what I'm alluding to, so needless to say, in my personal life, unfortunately my heart is hurting...a lot.

But in the midst of being sad, I have some wonderful blessings to celebrate:

1. Although my heart hurts right now, I'm so grateful, because that ache means I'm alive. That pain means I am capable of harboring emotional feelings for another human being. I had an absolutely devastating break-up a few years ago, and I was so scared that I would never be able to have romantic feelings towards anyone else again. How wonderful it is, that I was proven wrong. I was blessed with an opportunity to care about someone again, whether that relationship ends up working itself out or not. 

2. I have some amazing friends. The older I've gotten, I have really chosen wisely when it comes to my friends. Gone are the days when I had a tons of friends, here are the days when I nurture the friendships with the women I call my best friends. The ones who are truly there for me when I need them. You really learn who your true friends are when you need love, encouragement and support the most. 
  
3.  My family is awesome. Their advice, encouragement, support and love never ceases to amaze me. I am so, so, so lucky.  I can't wait to get loved on when I go visit my mom and Gramman this weekend and I really can't wait to see my Dad next week. His hugs are the best, and I could really use one.

4. Starbucks never lets me down. There is something about that caramel white chocolate mocha that makes my taste buds dance the happy dance.

5. Every tomorrow is a beautiful new day to experience. God is good.

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Friday, April 18, 2014

Five on Friday.... Let me Hop on the Link-Up Train


I'm pretty much hopping on the caboose of this link-up train, but so many of the blogs I read do it, so here I am.. hopping on... a la Dauntless style... 

One: This morning I officially found out that I'll be going on an all-expenses paid trip to Europe 10/9 - 10/13. I'll get to go with my best friend, Keila (or Kiki la Rue), who also teaches English at the same high school. We are taking a group of students to England/France in June 2015 and since we're new to the program, we essentially get to go on a mini-tour before hand to train us to be group leaders.. Right now, rumor has it the destination is Dublin, Ireland... 
Cue the excitement of International travel with a bestie.. 
This is Kiki la Rue.. she's my #RideorDie... seriously, one of the greatest friends I have ever had. #bestiefortherestie I'm pretty much obsessed with her. She's the peanut butter to my jelly. 
Two: I get to see my sweet Kansas City BFF, Kate this weekend. I'll be spending the weekend with her and her family, whom I love. Kate recently got engaged to a great guy and I'll be standing by her side as Maid of Honor in June.  Here's the dress I think I'm planning on getting...reviews say no stretch.. so it could be interesting.. 

Front... Exact same color.. clearly...not the same body type.. 
Here's the back... not the same color.. size... tan or hair color...
Three: My nails haven't been an all-you-can-eat buffet chewed on since early last week.. I even painted them with nail polish.. I know it's probably all in my head, but it had to have been that YouTube hypnosis video on Stopping Nail Biting...

Don't zoom in.. the cuticles are still a hot mess.. One thing at a time, people. 
Four: Am loving Kiel James Patrick's anchor swag.. Like...I want pretty much everything in a variety of colors, but I'm especially loving these lovelies. #swoon



Five: Yeah.. number 5.. isn't so great.. I'll post a longer post about it... but went to my dermatologist yesterday. Basically... I have the most severe case of Rosacea that she's ever treated.. Wish I could say she just started practicing.. but she's been in the field for 15+ years  and unfortunately, my face isn't responding to traditional treatments... So... cue the extreme route... several medicines....several creams...and a 30-day elimination diet... The latter of which will be the toughest challenge... I love food..     



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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tuesday Randomness: B-days, Kitty Cats, Rosacea & Oregano



So, life has been a bit crazy. We're getting into preparation for State testing at school and I'm busier than ever with some freelancing side work and grad school.. I've let blogging go by the wayside, which hurts my soul because I do want to make time for it... and I will.. I realize I've promised this several times already, but this one isn't an empty one... I promise. LOL

So, here's a bit of a catch-up/Tuesday randomness...

My BFF, Ashley, had a 1st birthday party for sweet baby Isabella. We always joke around with our parents that we're basically sisters, but God did them a favor because neither set would have been able to handle afford the two of us together... 

I love the cherry blossoms in the vase (you can get them at Pier 1) and the food was DELICIOUS... 

Surprisingly, my nail biting has improved...I even painted my nails a sparkly nude yesterday. Tried a hypnotherapy session last week on YouTube... not sure if it worked or if watching Tiptoe, my cat, bite her toenails did the trick..

Like...I would need more yoga classes to bite my own toenails which ew...that's not going to happen... well Yoga might, but not toe nail biting #gross, but thinking that I look like this when nomming on my fingernails makes me want to giggle nervously... and then hide..
I plan on doing a separate posting series about dealing with Rosacea... I have papular/pustular Rosacea which sucks.. anyone who has had a skin condition can understand the disastrous affects that it can have on your self-esteem.. The redness honestly doesn't bother me so much... it's the tiny bumps and what looks like pimples that does... I want to both hug and then slap the people who give me advice on how to treat my acne... I do sincerely appreciate your kindness in the suggestion of a treatment, but I only wish it was that. *sigh

This is so gross... and I can't believe I am posting a picture... so embarrassing...but when I started this blog, I promised to explore my vulnerable side and be authentic...so here's my flare-up.. in all its glory.. while saturated with an herbal facemask...

Someone please get me a paper bag.




Rosacea isn't curable and for me, it can be exacerbated by stress (which I have a lot of) weather conditions, not enough sleep, alcohol, certain foods, etc... I am always willing to try new diets or new "treatments" in an effort to tame the wild beast and reduce my symptoms... unfortunately, nothing really gives me relief for that long and flare-ups can take weeks to heal.

So,
maybe about two weeks ago, I saw on the Dr. Oz show about how a face mask of equal parts oil of oregano and olive oil is being used as a way to treat Rosacea sufferers, acne etc... I've tried it a couple of times, and I've seen some improvement, but not enough to know if it's the mask... or other things... When you use it (at night), the smell is very Oregano-ish.. Like a giant could totally confuse me for some fresh oregano and drop me into his pot of Marinara... 

I was texting with Bombay about the treatment and the accompanying smell being attractive to Italian Men (Disclaimer: I'm not trying to offend those of Italian heritage.. I spent three weeks in Italy and I love the country, the people and the food. A LOT, so please dont' leave me any snarky comments.) 
You're welcome for the laugh.

Here's a screen shot of a typical text exchange.. he's quite witty...totally love that about him.  



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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Cup o' tea, Anyone?



So, this past week I was on Spring Break (perks of being a teacher) and after closing on my house, I packed up Pippa and trekked a few hours North to visit my Gramman and Mom.

I've briefly mentioned it before, but I grew up a military brat. My dad was in the Navy, so I grew up in various states along the East Coast. Much of growing up had Mom taking on the role of both parents, while my Dad was like 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, and we moved around A LOT, which definitely had Mom sacrificing her career as a teacher. Dad picked a winner. So, after my Dad retired from the military and questions existed with the future of his own career, the birth of an idea between my Mom and Aunt was born. You see, there used to be a Victorian home in Vine Grove that once was a Tea Room and when the original owners closed up shop and moved to TX, the place remained vacant...and well.. now it has new owners and a new Tea Room in its place.

2 Sisters Tea Room, Vine Grove, KY

The name hails from the fact that my Mom and her sister, my aunt Aman (pronounced A-men) or Amy (as a toddler, my brother added "n" on to everything, hence Gramman and Aman) opened the place. When you first walk into the house, you see an arrangement of photographs of various generations of our family.

Mom....can you adjust the little picture on the bottom.. it's crooked and it's bugging my occasional OCD nature...
Here's their tea availability, all organized in a fantastic display of order. Samplings of each tea are placed in the jars to allow guests to take a whiff of the tea and get an idea of what each one will taste like.

A+ for Organization... Color coded by type and in alphabetical order..
The atmosphere isn't stuffy, like a traditional tea-room. You won't see very many pinkies up here. It's an inviting place, that is both whimsical and relaxing. The place has a lot of character. It's hard to tell from these photographs, but the wall colors are painted in bright hues - this is the butterfly/dragonfly front room.


The back room is the Alice and Wonderland room and is my absolute favorite. From the Chesire Cat, to the hanging pocket watch, the keys and the chandelier, I will happily go to this rabbit hole to have the best food...I'll have to take other peoples' word about the tea.

Confession: I do not like tea.... AT ALL...in fact, I hate it, which is why I laugh about my Mom being part-owner of a Tea Room.


They host a variety of food options along with their bottomless pots of tea (You don't have to order just one kind of tea..after the first pot, you can try another!) Some visitors come just for tea (I don't fall into this category)and a scone, but if I'm going to venture in for tea, I want either the Afternoon or the Full tea, which is an option but by reservation only. While the sweets are delicious, I prefer the Savory tier. My Mom and Aman are PHENOMENAL chefs, so this isn't a place where they are going to be serving cookies from Sam's Club. They put a lot of love into their selection of each week's menu (every week it's different) and in their preparation. 

When you get the Afternoon tea, you're served a scone first, followed by fruit and then of course the tier of heavenly treats. You'll see the pic...keep reading...

Our scone was chocolate-covered cherry, served with cherry preserves (I don't like cherries, so I had raspberry preserves... the scone was still remarkably tasty though, surprising since I don't care for cherries) After the scone, we got a delicious fresh fruit cup with Amaretto Breeze whipped topping... so good, especially if you like Amaretto, since the topping has just enough of a kick to identify that flavor.

Their serving tiers are sights to behold.. I mean take a look at it... You'll want to invite that deliciousness to meet your tastebuds too...


I'm so proud of my Mom and Aunt for turning a dream into a reality. It takes a lot of courage, hard work, and sacrifice. (In case you're wondering, Yes, my parents are still happily together, but Dad is busy being a work-a-holic in MD/DC and Mom took an opportunity and is busy working on her dreams here in KY. They FaceTime and fly to see each other as often as schedules allow. It's not ideal and certainly doesn't work for everyone, but Mom had 30 years of practice as a Navy Wife.. so it works for them)

I couldn't be happier for the success of the 2 Sisters Tea Room...even though I secretly hate her because my Mom finally lives 3 hours away from me (and not 12) and I want her to visit me at the drop of hat.

What would you do if you weren't afraid of failing? Would you start a business or would you begin a new hobby? 

Also, disclaimer I did not receive a free Afternoon tea reservation in exchange for this blog post, or because I'm my mother's daughter. I paid full-price for myself, like every other customer, and treated my Gramman too. 
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Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Bought a House today. Not Joking.



I know it's April Fool's, but I'm not joking... this is the face of someone who literally just signed their name like 63 times and bought a house...today... Holy Shit. Impulse buy officially completed. 

This ombre hair has GOT to go... thank God I have a hair appt tomorrow... never again will I go with anything a) that light or b) too far from my uber dark roots again... Trend tried. Verdict? Not.a.Fan. 
I'm currently on Spring Break (one of the perks of being a teacher) and I trekked to my Gramman's house (about 3 hours from where I currently live) for a visit with her and my mom. I'll be visiting one of my college best friend's, Alex, getting my hair done (Thank God...I may chop it off while I'm at it..) and will be having tea at the 2 Sisters Tearoom, my Mom and Aunt's adorably whimsically tea room with my bestie, Christin. Can't wait to spend a few days with some amazing ladies in my life. The older I get the more I cherish the relationships with my Mom, my Gramman and my best friends.

 I am so blessed. 

I also just FaceTimed with my dad.. It needs to be a more regular thing.  Love that man. 

Mom was super precious today. In celebration of becoming a homeowner, she got me a Starbucks gift card, clearly almost 29 years later, she still knows the way to my heart. Christin, I promise I am cutting back. 

She also mentioned a few weeks ago that she had a little something for me. My mom is one of the most thoughtful people I know..truly.. If I ever have babies, I hope that I can be half the mom that she is. 

Gift #1


This ladies and gentlemen, is a purple tool kit, complete with purple power tools.
 Domestic Goddess status, here I come.

Mom also made me a budget binder with templates to organize my finances in an attempt to aid me in my quest to be more domestic. I think I'd like to add a few things to get the rest of my domestic life more organized and perhaps reclaim some of my sanity. I have a 13 months and 2 weeks before I hit 30, and I'd really like to be the best version of myself by then, in nearly every aspect of my life. 

Operation Get My Shit together commencing.

Anyone have any fun templates they use to help organize their domestic lives?


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