August 18, 2014

Lazy Weekends of August


This Saturday Spencer and I found ourselves in the glorious position of wondering, "so what do we do today?" For the first time since probably last year, Spencer didn't work a single bit this past weekend (well, he didn't work last weekend either, but he had an insane cold and was mostly out of commission). We were head-over-heels ecstatic to have the weekend to ourselves! However, we were also stumped as what to do. Normally, our summer Saturdays were always go to the burbs and go waterskiing, but sadly, that is no longer an option. So what do we do if we can't waterski? We explore the city, duh.

We got up early and biked down Summer Streets before the crowds hit, stopped at Economy Candy for baby shower favors, and because Spencer was adamant, got dumplings. At 10:30 in the morning. "If I'm down here, I'm going to get dumplings," he said. I passed on them, needless to say. We got home by noon, and after eating and showering, we were like now what?

(Spencer said, "this is problem with waking up early on Saturdays." I told him to hesh up - I have a serious love of Saturday mornings.)

After a bit of America's Next Top Model (judge not that ye be not judged! and yeah, Spencer hates that show), we walked through Central Park and all around the Upper West Side. Like the old people we are, we parked our rear-ends on a bench by the Hudson River and people-watched for a embarrassingly long time. And because no trip to the UWS is complete without a stop at Trader Joe's, we quickly purchased a few necessities, like Meyer lemon cookie thins and wasabi-flavored seaweed. Only had-to-haves, clearly.

The rest of the night included Spencer making homemade pizza like a champ and watching multiple episodes of The West Wing.

Sunday followed in a wonderfully blissful manner - french toast and peaches for breakfast, church, naps, bike riding in the park, more of Spencer making dinner and more West Wing. I basically had to pinch myself all weekend, wondering if it was for real - no work, no demands, just us, doing whatever we wanted. 

Good thing this doesn't happen too often, or we might get sick of each other.  

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August 6, 2014

Unintentional Radio Silence

Writing is something I don't naturally enjoy. Once I'm in the habit of writing, I can carry on like it ain't no thang, but if I ever get out of the habit? Well, I don't write a darn word for almost four months. In an effort of writing again and documenting our lives, here's what we were up to, April through July:

We still exist! Easter Sunday 2014, photo by my sister

April: April saw me working the most I ever have in my entire life (first and hopefully only weekend plus lots of late nights). I got a teeny glimpse of what it's like to be Spencer, and I honestly have no idea how he works those hours on a regular basis. NO IDEA. For Easter we went up to Massachusetts to be with my family, but with a quick stop in Boston! I hadn't been to the actual city of Boston in ages, and then I went two months in a row (March with my older sister and April to crash Spencer's work trip for a night)! Such a cute city. April's most notable happening was that it was my in-laws last month of living in New York. When not at work or in Massachusetts, we spent all of our free time with Spencer's parents, who moved on May 2nd after living in the NYC suburbs for 36 years. After a month in Utah, they moved to Tokyo where my father-in-law is doing legal work for our church, and my mother-in-law is doing service work. (See more of their adventures on their blog.) We miss them terribly, and I'm in denial that they are never moving back here. Sob!

May: We were both still working a lot in May, but never fear, good times were had. We did a fair amount of biking on the weekends, and I ran two races in my quest to do the 9+1 program for entrance to the NYC 2015 marathon. This marked the 3rd year in a row that I did the Brooklyn Half Marathon, and my gosh, I love that race. I hope to do it every year we live here. Memorial Day weekend saw us in DC for a day for Spencer's cousin's wedding (I was sooooo happy to be farther south for a bit!), work for Spencer, and then more biking and delicious tacos.

June: I was not working a lot in June (just assume that Spencer always is), and it was a pretty chill month. Spencer and I are trying to adjust to spending our summer Saturdays in the city, when normally we'd be with his parents, waterskiing on the lake. Sigh...I didn't run much as I've had some tendinitis issues that needed to heal, so no races. I did go to my first concert in NYC - Ingrid Michaelson at Terminal 5 with a couple of girlfriends. It was a blast, and Ingrid Michaelson was fantastic live. My sister Jenna came into town one weekend with a friend, so I hung out with them a bit, and then we went out to Fire Island another weekend when Spencer's sister Liz was there. Go check out her photos - they are gorgeous. We ate the fanciest meal of our lives, and went to another wedding! A close friend got married at the very tippy-tip of Manhattan, across from the Statue of Liberty with a gorgeous sunset in the background. We then ate and danced the night away, and it was perfect.

July: Again, work was kinda slow, so I found other things to fill my time. I started taking Excel classes after work, learning how to do VBA Macros, and yeah, I watch a lot of tv. For the 4th, we went up to Maine with the rest of my family, where we hiked and ate and saw fireworks and a parade. I always love going up there. I ran race #6 with Kiasa, my friend and running buddy who sadly moved to the suburbs. She was the one who got me through my first Brooklyn Half, and I was so happy to catch up with her. Spencer continued to work, including one weekend wherein he billed over 40 hours. Ouch. I planned a baby shower I'm throwing in August and OUR TRIP TO ITALY. We go in September, and I'm soooooo excited. Other than that, we try to enjoy the city on the weekends - get cheap eats in various neighborhoods, go to free concerts, and spend Sunday afternoons in Central Park.

So that's what we've been up to. I'm excited for August, which always seems like the start of summer for me (due to internships and bar exam in prior summers). Things have already looked up with us attending our fourth Shakespeare in the Park on Saturday and planning to bike Summer Streets this weekend!

P.S. no promises that I'll blog in the next four months :)

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April 14, 2014

I don't know how Spencer does it

On Thursday, I worked from 9 am to 8:30 pm.
On Friday, I worked from 9 am to 10:30 pm.
On Saturday, I worked from 10:30 am to 12:30 am.

Working 39ish hours over those 3 days makes that the most I have ever worked in my adult career. Part of me is proud of it, like it's a rite of passage. I've probably mentioned this before, but I normally work great hours, solidly 9 to 5 or 6 WITH a 1-hour lunch. In fact, my hours are known among my friends for being cushy. And the times I do have to work late (i.e., quarter-end, month-end, or P&I day), I always know what days those will be, and I rarely stay later than 8:30. I had never worked a weekend before. The other part of me is like, never do this again!

Working in the office on a Saturday until almost 1 am? That one was a doozy, right there. The crazy thing is that I didn't actually mind it in the moment. I mean, sure, it sucked big time working on the nicest day of the year. It sucked big time being in the office when Spencer was actually around (something that hasn't happened too much lately). But! I was so freakin' busy that the time just flew. Those 14 hours honestly felt more like 4. The most shocking part of it all, and what definitely made the weekend not as terrible as it could have been, is that all of us stuck in the office all those hours were cordial, helpful, and kind throughout the entire thing. Who on earth is gracious and polite at midnight?! I truly have the best coworkers.

A bizarre side-effect of working until 12:30 was that I couldn't fall asleep until 3 am. Yes, I was zonked, but because my mind had been in overdrive for so long, I couldn't shut it off. My coworkers had the same problem. Guess I had no choice but to watch some Vampire Diaries. :)

Sunday, thank goodness, was another beautiful day, and I didn't have to go to the office. I did oversleep church, waking up at 10:30, thinking it started at 11. In fact, we were meeting at 10, an hour earlier than normal. In my defense, we do usually meet at 11, and please, you think my brain was functioning? Spencer was also extremely exhausted from a very crazy work week and requires that I wake him on Sunday basically every week. So after sleeping in, we went to Woodlawn Cemetery (the most beautiful cemetery I've ever seen), walked around Saxon Woods, and spent time with my in-laws. I was surprisingly cheerful and functional. I was cuddly and chipper! Spencer didn't know what to make of it.

Then, Monday morning came about. You better believe I've been a zombie alllllll day. Doesn't help that we are doing a quarter-end on top of what went down this weekend, meaning lots o' work and staying to the "late" hour of 8 pm. I'm pooped.

And with all this going on, the one thought that comes to my mind over and over again is "How on earth does Spencer do it?!??!!" He works these hours and even worse! Regularly! My brain is so fuzzy - how does he ever concentrate? I'll happily not make quite (ok, not nearly) as much and work my sweet, sweet 40 hours a week.

Spencer, upon hearing this, nodded his head and said "mmm-hmmm!". As he deserves to.

I too want a mausoleum and gorgeous road sign for my resting place.
Waaaaaay back in the day, Spencer made oodles of birdhouses for Saxon Woods as his Eagle Scout project. And guess what? They are still there! Cutie.


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April 9, 2014

Fabulous Bits of First Quarter 2014

I think it's high-time that I review some of the fabulous bits of the first quarter of 2014. Too easily can I forget them amidst all the cold and ennui that generally characterize January through March of basically every year ever and especially 2014. Therefore, here I am, putting the good stuff down on paper (well, internet), because guess what? It is possible to be happy in New York in February (video H/T Lauren).

Here's what I've loved about 2014 thus far:

 - Going up to Maine with friends for a long weekend. I just love, love, love going up to Maine, and we have such amazing friends.

 - Running a race a month. I'm doing the 9+1 program for guaranteed entrance to the 2015 NYC marathon, and 3 of the 4 races I ran this year (already did April's) qualify for the program. In May, I'll be knocking out 2 more races.

- Puerto Rico. duh.

- Biking. It finally got warm enough to bike around a couple of Saturdays ago, and Spencer and I biked all around East Harlem and Randall's Island with our friends. I had been dying to go biking because I hadn't gone since early November and this is a bit ridiculous considering I had never even biked in the city until August of last year. But now I'm hooked.

- Cross-country skiing in New Paltz (as seen here and here). It's the same place where we love to go in the fall and hike the Lemon Squeeze (seen here). Every time I'm up there, I never want to move. If you haven't been to the Hudson Valley area in New York, you haven't seen beauty. (ok, you probably have. but still, you are missing out.)

- Visiting my sister and her family in Boston, whom I hadn't seen since July! My niece and nephew had grown so much in the months we were apart!

- Spending time in the 'burbs with my in-laws before they move in less than a month (I'm kinda in denial about that). Who's gonna hike the Lemon Squeeze with us now??? And what about boating on summer weekends? Blech.

- Hanging out with the bestest lady friends ever, who were gracious enough to entertain me while Spencer worked night after night, weekend after weekend. Activities included but were not limited to going out for dinner, me organizing their kitchen, me organizing their closet (not the same friend as the kitchen), and talking til 2 am. (seriously tho, I love organizing. feel free to make me organize your home.)

- Doing city stuff on those rare weekends when Spencer wasn't working and the weather was good, like walking across the park to check out The Beatles exhibit in the Lincoln Center library. (It was pretty cool and free! Our favorite combo.)

- Having friends over. Unsurprisingly, I'm a real weenie about walking in the cold, so I much prefer it when friends come to our apartment. We've had our awesome city friends over for games, sporting events, and pi(e). Side note - I learned that most schools don't celebrate Pi Day! What is this monstrosity?!? Did yours? Did you sing the Pi Day song, a.k.a American Pie with the lyrics changed?

- Lastly, reading. I'm not Janssen or anything, but I knocked out 24 books in the first quarter of 2014, which is more I had in a while. This, of course, was all before Vampire Diaries came into my life and sucked up (get it?!) any reading time I would have had.

Alright, so the beginning of the year wasn't haw-ible. It might have been even been a bit good. But I'm still glad it's done. Here's to spring 2014!


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March 31, 2014

Acting Like an Adult

Some days I come home from a long day at work and do really lame things, like chores and errands. While doing these, I like to mentally pat myself on the back and say "Way to be an adult! Way to act like a grown-up!"

I feel like a kid, playing at grown-up. This feeling is reinforced by the marathons of Vampire Diaries, buying a burger for dinner because why not, and singing show tunes while walking about the city. (It's was raining, I had an umbrella, it was inevitable.) However, when hauling clothes to the laundromat, cleaning the toilet, and making my own doctor's appointments after working in an office all day, I realize that maybe, juuuuuust maybe, I am a 26-year-old, with a career almost 5 years strong and an apartment in New York City that I pay for.

I do act like an adult! Occasionally. And those few moments totally justify eating 5 cookies in one night and downing a liter of Diet Coke, right? Right.

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