Friday, June 3, 2011

“WOWZA, 38 years”*

38 years ago, they met in Pennsylvania on a blind date. Her college roommate had recently started dating a med student at Penn St. and wanted to set her up with his good friend and roommate. They instantly hit it off and began dating. 3 years later, sans engagement ring, she took a chance and moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan with him (which was VERY rare back then). This is where he would do his residency, she would get her Masters degree and they would start their life together. A small town cheerleader never knew she’d find her match on a blind date, but apparently one’s future can never be too predictable.

Yesterday marked my parents’ 38th wedding anniversary. I’m gonna be honest. Each year, June 2nd seems to come and go, and yes, I send a text and/or a card to both parents wishing them a Happy Anniversary and inquire where they will be dining at night, etc; however, I never have really sat and thought about what this annual landmark truly means.

Perhaps it’s because more and more of my friends are getting married, or perhaps it’s because I’m now living with the man I believe I will someday marry (no pressure, buddy ;-), but I laid in bed last night considering what a gigantic blessing my parents are – not only to all of us kids, but also to one another.

I owe so much to each one of my parents, and I’ve always considered them somewhat separate entities in that aspect. For example: I believe that my mother gives me my outgoing, energetic personality while my father gives me my strategic and calm way of thinking through everyday situations. However, when you’ve been with someone for so long, as they have, it’s only obvious that you become a ying and yang, of sorts, with one another. They compliment each other so well, and I know that’s what I’ve always strived for in my relationships (and what I believe I’ve found with the Canadian). This is not to say the past 38 years have been easy, and I’m sure I haven’t even been privy to HALF of their trials and tribulations; however, to love someone so much and create such a loving partnership with another person is just somewhat incredible to me, once you really sit down and think about it.

So this is a love letter to my parents, for continuously being great role models to us all in both love and life. Here’s to many, MANY more happy years ahead (and a killer 40th celebration!!) <3

 *My mom’s text response to my well wishes yesterday…thus, why I adore her.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

LIVE! From Canada...

WOW! It has been SO long since I have attempted to blog. I must admit that getting used to this new life has left me at a loss of where to begin my "Canadian" blogging life. But as my dear friend and mama, Cristina Curci, reminded (guilted/nagged) me, "You do realize that this is like the BEST time to blog considering we all want to know what you're up to?? RIGHT???" To which I replied, "GOT IT"...and so here it is. I'm BACK!

So life with my Canadian in Toronto has turned out to be absolutely wonderful. I mean, I knew it would be, but there's always an ounce of question when you take such a risk, so I'm very happy to say that I am extremely happy (however, don't think for a minute, that I don't still miss my friends like CRAZY!!!). There have definitely been some highs and lows: me crying in the middle of the Eaton Centre about cell phone plans, me crying due to a "group of hoodlums on the bus", and me crying about spilt milk. Not really about spilt milk, but it's basically to prove that I completely admit that I was crying a lot for awhile there (if any of you know me, this is completely not surprising at all. See: ). But now that I have officially been here for over a month, I believe I've gotten in the *Canadian rhythm*...besides, I've now officially celebrated Victoria Day, so that makes me official, right??

All jokes aside, I decided my first post would be something educational. Something that will answer many questions that have come from my *friends from the states*..."WHY BAGGED MILK?!?" This is not just a joke from 30 Rock. Here, they actually serve milk in bags. When I first visited, I thought it was just something weird that my Canadian chose to do...but alas, you visit Starbucks and BAM, there's some milk in a bag. So I've done a photo demonstration of how this works. Because, I must say, I'm definitely a fan of bagged milk now. Just sayin'.

Step 1:  Get bag of milk and milk pitcher out.
Step 2: Place bag in pitcher and bang on counter a few times. (Not sure why, but my Canadian says to, so I do).

Step 3: Cut small hole in corner of bag.
Step 4: Pour and enjoy!
Are you all jealous now?!? I bet. I promise to keep up with this thing and keep you all in the loop!!!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ode to Miss Clark...

Hope everyone in SF is enjoying the beautiful weather we're currently having. Pretty sure my legs forgot what real sunlight felt like!! It's absolutely amazing out right now!

One of my very best friends, Katie Clark (we call her Clark), flies in tonight for a weekend o' fun!! She wanted to get out here one last time before I move to TO (less than 3 weeks!!!), so she's taking advantage of her spring break (she's a 1st grade teacher) and flying to see me! We have a fun weekend planned, which includes great restaurants, final four games and rides on cable cars (she's been wanting to do this since I moved to the city 7 years ago...we still have not done it).

It's hard to believe we've known each other for over a decade (good god we're old). We lived on the same dorm floor, we lived next door to each other in our sophomore year apartments and then we ended up pledging the same sorority. Needless to say, she knows me inside and out and I just love her to pieces. I even allow her to nuzzle with my Canadian when they're together ;-)
Typical pose by Clark and me, Chicago 2011.

Clarkie, Tara and Meg at The Pony in Chicago, Christmas 2009.

Clark drinking from the spit bowl whilst wine tasting, Napa Valley 2009. (yes, folks, we keep it classy)

Enjoy your Wednesdays everyone!!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Random Friday tid bits...

Happy Friday everyone! I'm not sure about everyone else, but this week has been particularly long and dreadful. Perhaps because it's been non-stop raining here in SF...blah. The plus side of this weather is that it's causing me to excitedly peruse online for summer clothes!!

Since I didn't do a "What I'm Loving Wednesday" post this week, I figured I'd throw up a few odds and ends today that fit under that category.

1. I'm loving that my Giants commercials have finally hit the airwaves. Our agency has had this account for quite sometime now, but this was the first year that my scripts got sold in. It was a very big group effort (James, Olga, name a few) and I'm just excited about how they came out. Here are two just to give you a taste, but you can view them all here.

2. I'm loving that I got to have a nice little date with my Tina last night. She wanted to catch the second half of the SDSU game after work, so we walked next door to Hillstone and had some wine and an app. We laughed because before we both got into relationships, we frequently did the "after work drinks" it was just nice to enjoy some "us" time for an hour.

Rosemary foccacia and olives. Yummy!

3. Lastly, I'm loving March Madness right now. Though I'm always loving this time of year in sports, this year is just crazy. My bracket is completely broken at this point and my team is out of it, so it's just fun to root for the underdog!!
It must also be noted that this is my new favorite salsa. I may need to pack some up for Toronto.
That's all I got, kids. Enjoy your weekends!!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

A night with my ladies...

Last Friday was Ladies Night! As the weekends that I have with my SF ladies start to dwindle, we figured we should take advantage of a night out after our Friday Night book club. There was no special occasion, other than to spend time with one another. We had a blast, but quickly learned just how old we're getting (i.e. leaving the "live music bar" to go to something more "quiet and calm") and once the wine settled in, there were plenty of preemptive "goodbye tears". Alas, we had a blast and got some pretty priceless photos.

Here are a few highlights of the night. I borrowed a few of these from Miss V, since the majority of my 8 photos from the night only included pics of Meg and An for some reason....ahhhh, good times.
Started the night at Tina and Jules' house for Pioneer Woman book club. 
"Cabs are heah!!!!" En route to North Beach. 
Love this pic. Pretty much captures what we're all like when we're out. All in our own worlds, yet together at the same time.
Love this girl.
Jules, Missy and a random in the background (thank GOD I got her in this shot).
 I'm gonna miss these girls with all my heart <3
It's horribly rainy here today, the kind of day that makes me want to curl up in bed with a sappy chick flick (or LIFETIME movie); however, I guess work will have to do.

Happy Thursday everyone! The weekend is just around the corner...

Monday, March 21, 2011

Welp, it's official!!

As some of you may (or may not) know, I’m officially making the move to Toronto to be with my Canadian. It’s such a bittersweet move for me, I’m leaving some of my closest, bestest friends behind; however, I get to make a move to be with the man I love and truly believe I will marry, sometime in the future.

Now, this won’t be one of my “sappier” blog posts (don't worry) about the move, because I’m assuming there’s plenty of time for *that*. Instead, this is a “getting excited” post.

I believe my Canadian and I have done better than anyone could have (or would have) projected us to do, given the 2,500 miles between us…and the fact that we met in VEGAS. It’s definitely the small things that I’m looking forward to and that will make all the difference between a “local relationship” as opposed to my current “long distance” relationship, which is why I’m thoroughly excited to make his house, our home.

2 examples of the small things I’m excited for:

1.     *Events*…I’ve officially booked my flight for the 16th in order to coincide with a work event that the Canadian would like me to go to with him. In our whole history, we’ve never been able to do something like this.  So, even though he claims it’s gonna be boring, I’m quite pleased with the idea of getting all dolled up with him and attending!

2.     *Home ideas*… The Canadian has a thing he does, he can just drop sentences within a conversation that probably just seem normal to him, but for some reason are earth-shatteringly adorable to me. Like, I guarantee when he suggested we start a wine journal together once I’m living there, he just thought it was our typical, daily email chatter. But it made my stomach lurch with excitement/anticipation.

Obviously there are many, MANY more things that I'm looking forward to; however, as in most relationships, small things can go a very big way, so just wanted to point a few of the "less obvious" things out.

On the flip side, one of my biggest fears of the move is due to this little lady. 
Bella has never been on a plane, much less been in her carrier for more than about 15 minutes at a time. The Canadian keeps reminding me that “she’s not the only cat to ever have traveled”, but I’m just hoping the vet may give her some good sedation medication (and possibly for me ;-).


Friday, March 11, 2011

Friday Odds and Ends.

To end this crazy, weird week...I figured the only thing that would do it justice is to post a few pics of stuff that has happened. Enjoy!
Exhibit A: Was faced with this little "gem" on my trip on BART back from the airport on Monday evening. Not only does she have a raging *shmammy moe*, but she also has her shoes off...on a public transportation vehicle...which was soon followed by picking a blister off using her train card. No wonder we are faced with articles such as this: Clean it up, lady, clean it up.
Exhibit B: After many, many months (ok, maybe even years) of procrastination, I finally sold my lovely Jetta. I've had a complete love/hate relationship with this car. I got "her" as a graduation gift from my father back in 2004. I was elated, but soon learned I'd be residing in San Francisco. After anyone and everyone telling me, "DO NOT BRING A CAR TO SAN FRANCISCO", Stubborn Stacy over here chose not to listen. So after many years of overpriced garages, backed up parking tickets and repair men *taking me for a ride*, I finally got a decent deal for it that will serve as a little *nest egg*. However, I'll never forget the many great memories that were had in this country tours = one of the favorites. 
This was our trip to Napa with my Chicago ladies, June 2009.
Exhibit C: Obviously most have heard about the horrific Tsunami that hit Japan today (thoughts and prayers go out to everyone that was hit by such a tragedy). Now, what some may have not heard about, is the fact that my mother texted and called about 7 times total at 5:30am this morning warning me to GET THE HELL OUT OF THE MARINA. Now, in true mother/daughter fashion, this instantly sent a surge of fear through me (thinking to self: "If mom is this freaked out, it must be serious!!!!!!").

Cut to:
-->Me barging into Roomie's room in sheer panic, tears in eyes
-->Roomie leaping out of bed, clamoring around, freaked cause she "has zit cream on!!"
-->We finally compose ourselves and come up with a game plan
-->Shower and get ready
-->Get into the car at 6:45am and drive to Burlingame (we were SO much safer there) for a Friday morning breakfast (aka: evacuation breakfast)

Now cut to about 2 hours later in the office, my sweet Tina telling EVERYONE that will listen about my idiocy this morning. It was a true Midwest moment in California. *sigh*
Note: the time.
Beautiful morning from the passenger side.
In other news, I'm very excited for the weekend ahead. I get to have dinner with Tina, Walker and Kim tonight. Our monthly dinners are always jam packed with good food, great wine and extraordinary gossip. Then a fun day ahead tomorrow with the lovely Ms. Favro, who will be in the city, which always creates memories (SAYYYYYY BABYYYYYYY). And last but not least, an awesome brunch planned for Sunday with the ladies. Can't wait!

Enjoy your weekends!!!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Weekend Wrap-Up

Yes, I know it’s Tuesday. Yes, it’s probably annoying to read about a weekend that was already a few days ago…but I had a nice, long weekend back in the Midwest…so here’s the recap. Buckle your seatbelts, kids, here we go with tons of pics.

The Canadian and I started the weekend out downtown Chicago. We both flew in on Thursday afternoon and went to a fabulous meal at Graham Elliot. We then ventured out on the town, just the two of us, which is honestly one of my most favorite things to do.
Went to Rodan Bar to enjoy a Lychee Royale. Yummy!!
Next day we explored at the Shedd Aquarium. If you are ever in Chicago, it’s definitely a place to go. I hadn’t been since I was about 6 years old, so it was cool to check out. It’s set right on the lakefront in a really cool building. The Canadian is quite the “nature buff”, so he really enjoyed our time there.
Gray day in Chicago, but luckily the rain held off until we got home!
Ohhhhhh The Canadian thought he was funny by posing like this. Needless to say, the pictures have become much more constant ever since the blog. Hahahahahaha.
Though he hearts most animals, he's SO scared of snakes. He was legit NERVOUS to take this picture.
Later that evening we met my older brothers for drinks and dinner. We ate at Longman & Eagle. This place blew our minds. It’s a very small restaurant that takes no reservations. Luckily we found a small space at the bar so we were able to comfortably hang out for the 2hr wait time!! As expected, my brothers and my Canadian became fast friends, bonding over my embarrassing stories and habits in a way that only my boyfriend, siblings and close friends can get away with.
Biggest Brother Derek...<3
And even later that evening we met up with all of my closest college “sisters”. My brothers have strangely become like older siblings to these girls, too, so they always have a blast when we’re all together. This night ended WAY too late, but I figure that just shows how much fun we were all having. <---such justification on my behalf.
We were missing a few lovely ladies that night, but these girls are my everything.
Clarkie looked like a dwarf next to Brother Brian and the Canadian. Sidenote: Brian had been in Florida before this so he was a bit sunburnt. LOL.
Meaghan is one of my very best friends and I'm pretty sure we have a candid photo like this one from every night spent together. Sooooooo typical!
The next day we all slept in quite late and quickly found ourselves racing around to get to Dekalb, IL, which is where my little brother was getting married. After about an hour and a half in the car due to Chicago traffic, we showed up with smiles on to greet the bride/groom and of course my parents and numerous family friends. It was a whirlwind of an evening, but felt great to reconnect to some family friends that have, at many times, felt like surrogate parents to us all. My little Michelle was happily running around the reception, undoubtedly on a sugar high and attention high, but it feels so good to see the utter happiness this little girl finds in life. (Case in point: she was beyond herself based on the sound that her Uggs made whilst stomping around on the dance floor).
We were inseparable throughout the night. I honestly needed to soak up as much as I could. (Sidenote: my mother would be upset if I didn't mention the fact that she had Mary Jane's to wear but they were too big, hence the Uggs).

Family pic before the ceremony.
Jeff and Heather make it official!!!
Me and my dad at the reception...<3
Meesh dancing in her "big girl shoes"!! Heart = melting.
My brothers and me. Still so crazy to see how grown up we all are.
Loved this pic of my Canadian, dad and Meesh. So cute, love them all.
After the wedding night, the Canadian and I went back home to my parent’s house in Rockford. My mom was so relieved that the wedding planning was over so we all just enjoyed a nice dinner in. So nice to be with both my parents while they continue getting to know my Canadian and watch as they learn just how great he is. I love getting the “mother’s approval”. No matter how old we get, I know that it’s one thing I will always need, whether it’s in love, life, career choice, etc. Moms are the best.

And that’s about it. It was such a fun weekend, partially because I officially completed the 21 Day Cleanse right before I left for a weekend that was filled with good food, great wine and tons of fun…good timing, eh??


Tuesday, March 1, 2011

My Best Friend's fast approaching!!!

Ahhhhh, once again, I've been a horrible blogger lately. I've had a ton on my mind recently, so I haven't felt like I've had a clear enough brain to make much sense on here. So apologies, first and foremost, especially to you Miss Curci (Tina always keeps me on my toes about this stuff...)

Anyway, I finally caught up on the phone with my best friend Ashley Harty (soon-to-be Barnikel) on the phone on Sunday and it made my entire weekend happier. First of all, this girl is my rock. We've been best friends ever since 7th grade, and if you were anything like me, those defined the *awky* years (except, of course, of my dear friend Meaghan who claims she "peaked" in middle school).

Back to my point, Miss Ashley will be marrying the love of her life come October 15th of this year. She has graciously appointed me MOH, which is a title that I've been toting around proudly for the past several  months and throwing around in sentences to sound cool...but until this past conversation, it never seemed so real that the first love of my life will soon be a married grown-up (Ash: are you panicking yet?!?!?! ;-). Thus, I've decided to dedicate this blog post to the lovely bride-to-be with a simple Top 5 Reasons Why I Adore Ashley (and Rob)!...

1. Complete opposites. Since Day 1, Ash and I couldn't be more different. She legit takes about an hour to get ready...for bed. During sleepovers, back in the day, I'd fall asleep before she would even come to bed...and we were 12 years old. She has always tried to make me into more of a lady, and I've always tried to rough her up around the edges a bit, but I am pretty sure I have won thus far considering UNC pom-poms were incorporated in Rob's proposal.
Case in point: she wanted this picture taken near the flowers...I mocked her the entire time.

2. Rob is tall. This may seem weird to you all, but I've always yelled at Ash for constantly dating tall guys. As a 5'9" gal, I always thought it was selfish of 5'7" Ashley to *hog* the tall boys. Well, Rob is definitely very tall; however, the Canadian is gonna be able to give him a run for his money in I'm thinking I'm okay with it now ;-)
Robbie is 6'6"...making Ash look like a little bumbo most times.
3. Ashley is marrying me. A few great qualities that Ash has is that she keeps things private (unless you're her close friend), she doesn't say things just for shock value and she is so smartly funny. Well, as stated above, these are all things I am not. Once I met Rob for the first time I thought, "Holy crap! This guy is me....but in male form." Much to Ash's chagrin, she had to agree. And she pretty much hates when it's the three of us cause Rob and I tend to gang up on her long getting-ready habits, her OCD tendencies, etc. Point being, she's stuck with me, even when I'm not nearby.
We had just shared a "moment" that we thought was very Bachelorette-eque.
4. Ain't No Mountain High Enough. Or something like that. Another small tidbit of Ash and my friendship is the fact that we haven't lived in the same town since we were Freshmen in high school. Our parents spoiled us and flew us back and forth (which I think was her mom's guilt for forcing her to move away ;-) for the second half of high school and most of college. This relationship has truly proved that no matter how far apart you are from can still be connected at heart. Ashley is still the first person I bounce ideas off of, call to vent to or send a silly card to.
Back in Rockford for our other middle school friend's wedding this past summer.
5. Ashley is truly one-of-a-kind. Though I've rambled on and on about this girl, there really is no word to describe her best. She is so unique and someone who I have/do/will always admire. I love her so very much and cannot wait to stand up beside her in October.
How could you NOT love this couple?!?!
This list could continue on and on...her love of Hanson, her dance moves, her hatred of when I "pick" at her, her obsession with facial products, etc...but I'll save all of that for my big MOH speech ;-) Be afraid, Ash, be very afraid!!!


**Special thanks to my little Olga for helping me *code* my blog a bit more!!! Thanks, buddy!!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

What I'm Loving Wednesday...Newbie Edition!

This is my very first "What I'm Loving..." post! Once again I'm taking the lead from my blogging guru, Miss V, and linking up with Jamie :-)

This week will be very simple to choose a handful of items that I'm loving because I'm officially in "countdown" mode for my trip back to the Midwest next week for my little brother's wedding weekend. The Canadian and I have decided to make it a long weekend for both of us to enjoy so I have a LOT to look forward to...

1. Though obvious, it must be said, I'm LOVING the fact that I get to see my lovely Canadian very soon. Each time apart seems longer and longer (which is funny, cause it's actually become shorter and shorter) it will be great to hug the crap out of him in the airport.
Self-portrait during our camping adventure in Canada, late Summer 2010
2. Which brings me to this...I'm loving that the Canadian finally gets to meet the rest of the fam. He has met my parents and my little bro, but has yet to meet my two older brothers, who mean the absolute world to me. I know he'll love them, I know they'll love him, so I'm just excitedly anxious to spend time with them all together!!
Love these two.
3. Speaking of all together...another huge aspect of my life that still resides in Chicago (or some surrounding areas) are my *sisters*!!! <insert: annoying sorority joke here>. Trust me, I NEVER believed I'd become one of THOSE girls in college, but I did and I would never have met these lifelong friends had I YAY for good decision making :-) Anyway, I will be bumping into these crazy girls at some point over the weekend, too, which makes my stomach gurgle with excitement!!

Lake Tahoe, Summer 2010
4. I'm absolutely in LOVE with Adele's new album. My little friend Olga gifted me this today and it has made my work day so much more enjoyable <3

5. Last, but certainly NOT least, I'm loving that I get to hold/love/spoil/smother/etc my little niece next weekend. For those of you who know me outside of the blogging world, this child is my whole world. It brings me to tears (see: "Cry Baby") just thinking of how much she means to me and I just cannot wait to see her so soon....oh, and yes, she's a mini version of me.
Michelle and me, Christmas 2010
Had to include because it makes my heart melt...The Canadian bonding with Michelle, Christmas 2010
I'm loving a lot of things in my life right now, so this is obviously just a snapshot for the time being. Sorry for being an MIA Blogger as of late...the long weekend threw me all out of whack!!


Friday, February 18, 2011

Cry Baby.

Hi, I'm Kristin, and I'm a crier. (Dana tells me that admitting is the first step to perhaps this will help ;-).

So our office is a pretty different "work environment" than most. We're all pretty much the same age, we all have friendships with co-workers outside of the office and we typically have rousing lunchtime conversations that either lead to discussing poop/vomit or embarrassing/personal topics that most would not discuss with their co-workers. 

Anyway, the other day the topic of crying came up, and it proved to be very interesting to see the contrasts amongst everyone, particularly amongst the girls. For example, my lovely friend Kim, NEVER cries (Not even when Homeward Bound was brought up). While Tina, well she is my "crying soul mate", she pretty much cries as much as I do, and I love her for that. 
My "crying soul mate". No tears here though...but there may have been later that night :-/

Here are some pretty humorous quotes from this convo:

"Last time I cried? Toy Story 3, for sure." ~Keenan

"Oh yeah, I cry at least 3 times a week. Derek hates it. Remember when I cried cause you forgot my burrito, Kristin?" ~Tina

"I BAWLED at the Friends finale." ~Me (and Tina agreed)

"I can't watch an animal movie without crying. Marley and Me? Forget about it!" ~Ben

Now, I must say, I cry for numerous reasons. Sometimes I have happy tears, angry tears, lonely tears and sometimes sad tears. I want to believe it's because I'm a "sensitive soul", but I kinda think it's because I'm a big baby, too. I must give credit to the Canadian, because he *deals* with my tears on a pretty consistent basis, for which I am truly grateful for and love him even more for (though I'm pretty sure he has numerously said, "I don't really know how seriously I'm supposed to take your crying anymore, since you do it all. the. time.") UH-OH, That's. Not. Good.

The point of all of this, is that I'll be crying A LOT come Saturday. I'm unfortunately parting ways with one of my lovely kitties, Alfie. For those of you who have heard my MANY stories about the trials and tribulations with this cat, may understand, and I really think I've held out longer than most would have. However, his love and company will definitely be missed, but his poor behavior (and bathroom issues) surely will not. I'm giving him to a no-kill shelter here in SF. It's really for the best and I need to keep telling myself..."Animals are not human. Animals do not feel human emotions." The shelter is great, it's actually where I got him from 6 years ago, so I'm just hoping a nice family or elderly person will fall in love with him and give him another great/loving 6+ years in their home.
Love this little guy.
Luckily my Roomie and friend Nicki are taking him for me, because I'm pretty sure the shelter does not need another blubbering idiot in the vicinity. But I'm positive that I'll be stocking up on tissues and placing numerous calls in to my mother and the Canadian throughout the day :-( 

Sorry to be such a Downer Debbie on a FRIDAY!!! Hope you all have a lovely long weekend!!! Today marks one week of *clean* eating for me...WOO-HOO!!!