Friday, May 30, 2014

High Five for Friday (Vol. 27)

It's been a short but busy work week.  Memorial Day was amazing and now summer is essential here (I never go by the calendar!)  Let's celebrate the week with a High Five!

1. This face... yep, my nephew is the cutest and he made this weekend in NJ extra special.

2. It was also awesome to see his parents, and many of our friends/family in NJ.  I really appreciated getting to stay over with our best friends, play games, catch up, and just relax.

3. And this happened...

Nothing makes you more smitten with your husband then seeing him with kids!

4.  I found these and oh my goodness are they delicious!

5. And finally, this happened

BBQ pulled pork french fries!  Delicious!!!  I got to go to dinner last night with an old friend, who's apparently 20 years younger than me- at least according to my mom.  We had almost 4 hours of laughs, which is always a good thing and the most delicious food.  If anyone is in the Bucks/Montgomery County area of PA I stronger recommend checking out The Perk- they have great food, great atmosphere and trivia on Thursday nights!

Another successful week in the books!

How was your week?  
How was your Memorial Day?

As always, linking up with some amazing bloggers...

 photo FFaves_zps6c1a013e.png

Barbie Bieber and Beyond

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Dangers of being a good Employee!

It used to be highly recommended to be a good employee.  You get promised things like bonus's and promotions and it makes your parents proud.

But what about the draw backs of being a good employee?
  • no lunch
  • everyone goes to you for help, taking away from your own work
  • no lunch
  • everyone walks all over you because they know you'll do it
  • no lunch
Are you seeing the trend here?

Really my point here is that being a good employee is important, if not essential, to your career and lively hood.  But it sucks when it leads to issues like I've listed above. At my last job I never took a lunch but I had time to walk around and take mini breaks so it made up for it.  This new job is INSANE in the MEMBRANE!  I never have a moment to breath- which is awesome because before I know it it's quitting time.  But it also sucks because I'm hungry and I've really got to pee!  And when the heck am I supposed to blog, I mean come on! (Just kidding... kinda!)

I finally put my foot down today and took a lunch, though it was at 12:45 instead of 12 and then cut short by my direct sales rep coming back from lunch at 1:10 but I logged off the phones and live chat, and I ate at a normal time (yesterday I ate around 3:30 while muting clients on the phone.)

I appreciate the job, the experience, and most of all the money, but boy oh boy is being a good employee a dangerous occupation.  

(Just as a disclaimer, I know it's not really dangerous and there are actually dangerous occupations which I respect and appreciate greatly, just had to get these thoughts out there.)

Manic Mondays with itsemmaelise

Friday, May 23, 2014

High Five for Friday (Vol. 26)

We made it through another week!  And this weekend is even sweeter as it'll be a 3 day weekend for most of us.  Who needed that?  Raise your hand!  Yep, me too!

Not a whole heck of a lot happened for me this week, aside from going to Rutgers for Alumni Weekend and working my butt off at work, so I wasn't going to even do this post. 

However, on my ride home last night I heard a song (I Go Back by Kenny Chesney) and it got me thinking.  Isn't it amazing how a song can bring you back in time?  Suddenly the memory of a time or day comes flooding back with all the feelings that came along with it.  I relish those moments, it's so fun to reminisce.  So I decided that for this weeks High Five post I'd share the top 5 songs that bring me back and where they bring me to.

1. The B-52's Love Shack  That's right, this song brings me back to being roughly 4 or 5 years old.  I can tell you exactly what happened the first time I heard it!  My aunt (Cookie) was babysitting me and she had just bought this tape.  I had NEVER heard pop music.  My parents were super careful about what I heard and watched as a kid so it was all kids songs, country music, and some musicals until this point.  We sat on the floor in my aunt's bedroom as she popped the tape into her 2 speaker stereo which was on the floor in her closet, I have no idea why, and we listened.  I remember dancing around and singing along as we listened over and over, and I remember her begging me not to tell my parents- I'm pretty sure I did the moment they came home, sorry!  Hanging out with my aunt that night and many others are some of my best memories from childhood.

2. Hootie and the Blowfish Only Wanna be with You  Brings me back to being 11 years old.  I remember buying my first CD boombox because I had to save for it and buy it myself.  My parents are very much the "technology is a fad" kind of people and felt it was a waste to buy one so I had to get it myself.  Along with that I remember the first 3 CD's I ever bought (Mickey UnrappedAmy Grant Heart in Motion, and Hootie and the Blowfish Cracked Rear View)  because they're the only ones I could afford for a while!  But Hootie takes me back.  I remember bringing the boombox outside and laying in the grass and just playing this as loud as my mom would allow me and my friends to listen to it.  This reminds me of the young and free days of summer break when all you wanted to do was ride your back or play in the backyard with your friends.

3. Cheap Trick I Want You to Want Me This song was huge my senior year of high school (2000-2001) thanks to a Coca Cola Commercial and later Joey singing it on Dawson's Creek.  I remember singing it at the top of my lungs in the cafeteria which doubled as study hall, then getting in trouble because study hall was supposed to be quiet.  We also rocked out to it at senior Prom.  Good times!

4. Dexy's Midnight Runner Come on Eileen I'm a freshman in college all over again (2001-2002.) I have no idea why because none of us were Eileen and it was an old song at that point but my friend's Jen and Meg would blast this song while we pretended to study in their room.  Soon we were all up, dancing around, and singing like fools.  Hearing this song brings me back to that dorm room, that campus, I'm suddenly 18 again getting ready for my first mid terms and finals, and then getting ready to go to the frat parties at WPI.

5. Sean Paul Get Busy The year I met Jim he went to the Bahamas for spring break (funny how he wasn't in college and went to spring break but I was in college and NEVER did a spring break trip.)  When he came back this song was on repeat because they played it so much on his trip.  It was then overplayed by us at every party that summer.  When I hear this song I'm 19-20 again, it's the summer of 2003 and we're in the basement of his rental playing beer pong and dancing with our friends.

Music is a huge part of my life- it makes me happy and it brings back great memories and feelings!

What songs get you reminiscing?  
What do they remind you of?

Linking up as always with some amazing bloggers..

 photo FFaves_zps6c1a013e.png

Barbie Bieber and Beyond

Tuesday, May 20, 2014


I am definitely guilty of this and it's something that needs to stop!  I keep comparing my life to what I see around me but I'm only seeing what people want to show me.

Take these words to heart my friends!  I believe we'd all be much happier if nipped this bad habit in the bud!

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Do Something

This song has been stuck in my head all week and I wanted to share it with y'all after volunteering at my alma mater yesterday.  Now granted, my volunteering didn't really help anyone (all I did was try to find other alumni who worked at Campus Info and see if they wanted to get reconnected with other alumni)  BUT it got me excited to be doing something.

That mixed with this song in my head has re-ignited my desire to get out there and help others.  Hey, if not us then who?

Go ahead, read the lyrics, listen to the song- it is catchy as heck and fun to sing along to!  Then try to tell me you don't want to get out there and do something, I dare you!

I woke up this morning
Saw a world full of trouble now
Thought, how’d we ever get so far down
How’s it ever gonna turn around
So I turned my eyes to Heaven
I thought, “God, why don’t You do something?”
Well, I just couldn’t bear the thought of
People living in poverty
Children sold into slavery
The thought disgusted me
So, I shook my fist at Heaven
Said, “God, why don’t You do something?”
He said, “I did, I created you”

If not us, then who
If not me and you
Right now, it’s time for us to do something
If not now, then when
Will we see an end
To all this pain
It’s not enough to do nothing
It’s time for us to do something

I’m so tired of talking
About how we are God’s hands and feet
But it’s easier to say than to be
Live like angels of apathy who tell ourselves
It’s alright, “somebody else will do something”
Well, I don’t know about you
But I’m sick and tired of life with no desire
I don’t want a flame, I want a fire
I wanna be the one who stands up and says,
“I’m gonna do something”

If not us, then who
If not me and you
Right now, it’s time for us to do something
If not now, then when
Will we see an end
To all this pain
It’s not enough to do nothing
It’s time for us to do something

We are the salt of the earth
We are a city on a hill (shine shine, shine shine)
But we’re never gonna change the world
By standing still
No we won’t stand still
No we won’t stand still
No we won’t stand still

If not us, then who
If not me and you
Right now, it’s time for us to do something
If not now, then when
Will we see an end
To all this pain
It’s not enough to do nothing
It’s time for us to do something [x3]

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Beer Swap

Summer is almost here!  Most of us have probably already started the party planning/barbecue hosting.  How about this summer you host a swap?

Who doesn't love a good swap?  Around the holidays we have cookies swaps and clothes swap parties seem to be getting really popular.

It's fun to give and get, and try something new without spending a lot of money.

Well I'm here to recommend a new kind of swap...

The idea is simple:

  • gather a group of friends
  • you each by a different case of beer (6 pack for 6 friends, 12 pack for 12 friends, etc...)
  • each person gets 1 bottle from the others cases
At the end you'll have a full case of completely different beers!

Just think of the possibilities!  There are so many beers out there and I hate to think that I'll buy a whole case and end up not liking it.  This is a great way to try something new but not waste the money.  Plus it's a fun new idea for getting social with your friends.


Have any swap ideas that are out of the ordinary?  I'd love to hear about them!

Friday, May 16, 2014

High Five for Friday (Vol. 25)

Hello, Friends!  It's a beautiful (not so sunny) day here in the greater Philadelphia area!  I'm back for my 25th wrap of a decent, but busy work week and looking forward to a weekend of volunteering and relaxing.

1. Friday was our 5th wedding anniversary, I'll get to that later, but on Friday night we treated ourselves to a night at the movies.  We went to see Neighbors and it was HILARIOUS!  I was really worried this would be one of those movies where all of the funny scenes are in the commercials but it wasn't!  I won't go into a long explanation, just know that I laughed almost the entire time and was not disappointed!

2.  Saturday we spent in Camden and Philly actually celebrating our 5th anniversary.  I honestly still can't believe we actually made it to 5 years and I won't lie that things are still tense, but we're getting there.

3.  Mother's Day was a little hard for me.  I thought that I'd have a newborn or would be nearly due at this point, but clearly that wasn't in the cards for me.  So I focused on my mom and since money is tight my gift to her was basically to be a servant all day.  As I had mentioned a last week, our basement flooded, so it was essentially a day of cleaning and reorganizing while Jim helped my dad with the lawn.  At the end of the day she said it was perfect because with our help she had accomplished way more than she had anticipated and that helped her to have a more relaxed week.

4.  Sales!  Sales are up and apparently it's partly because of me.  With my company creating my position as a sales support it's opening up the sales reps to sell (makes sense.)  The sales rep I'm partnered with was super excited because "we've" been in the lead all week.  Not gonna lie- I like being on top, I love winning!  It does nothing for my bottom line but it's still fun and I'm learning a lot so I'm looking forward to moving forward into my position as a sales rep at the end of the summer.

5.  Insurance!  It only took 3 weeks, but our insurance was finally straightened out and our cards came in- hallelujah!  This means Jim has one week to get to the doctor before...

6. (Bonus!) he goes to work!!!  That's right, folks!  Jim has finally gotten himself a job!  HALLELUJAH!  I cannot wait for him to get out of the house and start bringing in some money.  I know it will not only help our bank account but also help his confidence in knowing that he is finally doing something to help/support his family!

Now that the week is over it's time to look towards the weekend.  I'll be volunteering down at Rutgers and probably hanging out with some good friends.

How was your week?

What are your weekend plans?

Linking up with some amazing ladies:

 photo H54Fbutton_zps973d26e1.png

Barbie Bieber and Beyond

 photo FFaves_zps6c1a013e.png

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

NYC Love

What feels like a long, LONG time ago, late in March, a coworker/friend (Shannon) and I ventured into NYC for a random day of tourism.  The plan had been to go to the Guggenheim and see where the day took us, but when another friend/coworker we had made the plans with backed out, we hoped on a train and just went where the city took us.  It was a fantastic day!

The weather was warm and springy, exactly what we needed after the horrific Northeast winter we had endured and it felt so good to just be outside and walking in the sun!  By the end of the day, we were slightly inebriated, bonded, and exhausted!  Both of our phones had died, which made for a tricky trip home, and no opportunity for more pictures, but when they were rebooted at home, Shannon found that her pedometer measured over 15K of walking.  Our feet were tired but it was a happy tired.  If you ever have the opportunity to just go into the City (which NYC will always be the only "the city" in my vocabulary) and roam around, I strongly recommend it.  My best trips into the big apple have been unplanned and unexpected, it's just better that way- much less stressful.

We started our trip in NJ- of course.  She lives in Jersey City and I was in Bayonne.  It was my first time on a city bus by myself and of course I missed it the first time- apparently the driver thought I was waving "hello" not "hey come stop for me!"  But I made it onto the next one and I met her at the Journal Square Bus/Train terminal under the Jackie Robinson memorial.

We hoped a train- which one, I don't know- and headed into the under water tunnels to re-emerge in the City.  We were starving so our first stop was Friedmans.  It was my first serious brunch (which is an NYC specialty) and my first time having chicken and waffles.  The meal went perfectly with my Peach Bellini and Shannon enjoyed hers with a bloody Mary.  I was so excited with this meal, I ate every bit of it and drank every drop.  Please do yourself a favor and go to this little hole in a wall establishment- it's clean, friendly, and delicious!

From there we made our way over to Bloomingdale's.  I had never been inside this store before and it was everything I hoped and more.  It was the epitome of decadence in the City.  Shannon kept checking if I was happy with being there because she was looking for a birthday gift for her husband and didn't want to bore me.  I really don't think she understood my excitement in simply window shopping.  I touched a $2000 coat!  I had never done that before probably will never do that again!  I was in awe and having such a good time enjoying such a simple and maybe even silly thing!  Next we wandered around and ended up in Central Park where we saw some very interesting street performers who were dancing and jumping over park goers.  The show was funny and impressive. 

This was just next to The Plaza, which is gorgeous and has a lovely area to sit and people watch just outside.  We sat for probably an hour and just chatted.  I love to just sit and talk to my friends; we got to know each other better and talk about what was going on in our lives- sometimes it's exactly what you need to feel good.

We made our way back to Bloomingdale's for some sinfully delicious cupcakes (I had red velvet and she had pistachio) at Magnolia Bakery.  The line was crazy but nothing compared to some other famous food landmarks and it was absolutely worth it. (Photo in collage at the end.)

After taking a touristy trip through Rockefeller Center (picture below,) Grand Central Terminal was our next stop and I was taken back by it's beauty.  I love how old buildings are so nice to exam and take in.  People used to care about what these places looked like.  It makes me sad that there is little attention to detail on new buildings being built.

Shannon brought me over to the Whispering Gallery which I had heard of before but never experienced.  The architect actually built this area with acoustics that allow you to hear what the person in the opposite corner is saying.  We were like little kids whispering back and forth.

We ended our night in Korean town at a bar called K Town Pub.  I had never been to a Korean bar and couldn't get enough of their chicken wings- they were spicy but sweet and had so much meat on them!  We also had yogurt, which I did not understand was a shot and not a creamy dessert until it was delivered to us, and Soju- a Korean alcohol that was served in a hollowed out watermelon.  This stuff is dangerous!  It's delicious so you drink it down without a second thought, but you feel it when you stand up.  We were certainly feeling a happy buzz as we made our way back to the train station to get back to dirty Jerz.

There was nothing specific about the day and I think the randomness it was makes it so fantastic.  It was just a day in the city to see and do things I had never seen or done before with a good friend.  I'm already looking forward to my next random adventure!

What city do you love?
What's your favorite random thing to do in that city?

Linking up with:

Monday, May 12, 2014

1 Minute Scrambled Egg

I love having scrambled eggs in the morning.  I especially love having them on a sandwich.  But until recently, I rarely got to enjoy this seemingly simple meal because it is a bit time consuming, and I'd inevitably end up burning the eggs for fear of them being too runny.  To save money (no more Wawa breakfast sandwiches) and time, I knew I had to find an alternative, and here it is!

Microwave for exactly 1 minute.  Sorry I don't have a picture of this but our microwave has a weird pattern on the window and none of the pictures I took came out nicely.

The best part of the whole thing is that the eggs don't stick to the plastic, they literally slip right out onto the bread or dish.  Clean up could not be easier!

I've been eating mine on whole wheat toast since I read that even though bagels are delicious they're very hard to digest and not the best food for when you're trying to lose weight.  This would also be great with some bacon or a piece of low fat sausage.  

Do you have any little tricks that you use to save time or money in the kitchen?  
I'd love to hear your ideas and give them a try!

Linkup Button

Friday, May 9, 2014

This year we get wood!

Seems so wrong to say that, but I had to!  What am I talking about?  The 5th wedding anniversary!  This year, traditionally, we get wood per this list. There are so many jokes I'd like to make, but I'll be good and keep it PG!

If you haven't guessed already, today is my 5th wedding anniversary.  Holy cow, when did I get so OLD!  I remember thinking what this day would be like in the early part of our marriage.  I figured by now we'd have at least 1 kid, have bought a house or at least a condo, and we'd be headed to St. Lucia (our dream honeymoon location) to celebrate.  Instead, we're just putting the pieces back together after me wanting to jump ship, we have lost a baby, we live with my parents, and I have no idea what we'll do to celebrate.  Dreams coming true (sarcasm!)  But ultimately, we're together, we're in love, and really that's what I should be most thankful for.

My favorite photo from our wedding!

Since it's Friday (hallelujah!) I decided my "high 5 for Friday" would be marriage related- the top 5 highlights of our marriage; should be easy 5 highlights for 5 years.

  1. Our honeymoon- we went to Disney and Universal!  I can't wait to go again!
  2. Moving into our first apartment.  It was so cute- 2 bedrooms, brand new kitchen.  I loved it!
  3. Our 2nd apartment.  This one had 2 bathrooms and was on the first floor.  I loved how big the living room was and that it was easy entry from the parking lot.
  4. Our nephew was born and we fell so in love with him that Jim finally said we could go back to the doctor to start seriously trying again. 
  5. We found out we were having a baby. (It turned out sad but it's still a highlight for me- 2 magical days is how I'll choose to remember it!)

Now y'all know that our marriage has not been pretty!  We've been on a bumpy road the whole way along!  I had listed out the 5 "lowlights" of our marriage as well but we sounded so F'd up, I had to delete it.  It's just not necessary to wallow in the pain and suffering of the past.  I've had enough of being sad and depressed, I need to move forward and get out of this fog that I've been living in!

It's not NYE but I'm making some resolutions seeing as how this is a new year for my marriage. Here we go:

  1. Stop dwelling on the past.  If this marriage is going to last we need to both stop dragging up the bad things that have happened.  Time to let it go and move forward.
  2. Reconnect.  We've been doing a pretty good job of communicating but it still feels a little... off?  We need to really reconnect and feel comfortable again.  We're trying, we're getting there. 
  3. Get out of debt.  A huge issue with our marriage has been money or lack there of.  We are carrying around the weight of a mountain of debt.  We would be such better people if that were gone, helping us to relax and get moving on other goals for our future.  This would be a huge step towards having a successful life together.
  4. Have fun!  There are so many things we want to do and we can't, because of money.  Once we're out of debt, we're going to stay out of debt, but we're also going to have fun.  We're getting that trip to St. Lucia even if it takes us another 5 years (plus I want another trip to Universal, I need to see Hogwarts!)
  5. Get healthy!  I really, really, REALLY want to put start a family here, but I'll refrain.  We need to be healthy before we can have a baby.  Our biggest hurdle is Jim's Diabetes.  The doctor told us straight out if we could get is A1C down, we would quite possibly fix the issues we're having and POSSIBLY conceive on our own.  What a gift that would be!  I hate to think that we struggled through IVF, spent the money, took the time, felt the loss, when in the end we could have conceived on our own.  But everything happens for a reason.  We needed to go through that.  Why?  I'm not certain, but I believe that if nothing else all the struggle will help us appreciate our family way more than we ever would have if we had just conceived like it was as easy as breathing. 

As a very wise, very beautiful Matron of Honor once said- Life is a roller coaster so buckle up and hold on tight because it's going to be quite a ride.  I think of that speech every May 9th- how much our lives have gone up and down really is just like a roller coaster.  All I can do is buckle up, hold on tight, and enjoy the ride!  And that's exactly what I plan on doing.

Toasting with our best man and matron of honor!

Linking up with some amazing women!

 photo H54Fbutton_zps973d26e1.png

 photo FFaves_zps6c1a013e.png

Epic Mommy Adventures