Sunday, January 25, 2009

"I was ruuunnnning..."

Mini marathon training has started and I'm now through the second week of 30-minute runs 3x weekly and then a long run on Saturdays. If you'll recall, running the mini in 2:30 or less is one of my major goals for 2009. I usually just sign up for mini marathons, start half-heartedly training about a month before, and then wonder why my time never improves. Yesterday I ran 4 miles without stopping, which is something I've never done before. I am still skeptical about having it in me to run 13.1 without walking, but I think I might just be able to surprise myself.

In other news, Laura was in town this weekend and we took a spin down to the outlets at Edinburgh. We came home with more pairs of Nine West dress shoes than we care to mention publicly, workout gear from the Nike outlet, and new spring accessories from J. Crew. Laura joined us for church this morning and Kevin's sermon was about not using material objects to find contentment. Point taken, God. The overall message is that simplicity helps clear the path to God which is where contentment lies. I would like to look for the things in my life that make it more complicated and get rid of a few of them. Anyone willing to take a West Highland Terrier off my hands? Ha...just kidding. Really. You know I can't help but love that little dog.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Janaury - in Full Swing!

Hello friends. I'm back from my brief blogging hiatus - that's right, I was on sabbatical and I didn't even have the courtesy to tell you. That's because: 1.) it wasn't very long, and 2.) i'm not sure it would have rocked anyone's world.

I put all matters aside this past week and studied every chance I got when I wasn't at work, at class, or working out. I took Reg this morning and I think...I think...I may have passed. We'll see. Let's just say it is the first time I haven't shed tears of frustration during a CPA exam in awhile. I don't want to be too hopeful, but if I passed then I just have one more in mid-February...and it's the one I've already passed before but my fine friends in Nashville at the CPA HQ think that 18 months is the longest you should have to pass all four sections so the information is still current. Nevermind the fact that there are some people out there who have had a CPA license for 60+ years who've never had to retake the exam and, if current with CPE requirements, can still practice in any of the 50 states. Hey, that's fine. Keep the hoops coming, Nashville! I'll jump through one more if that's what it takes!

I'm back from ranting now and on to the more important, fun things...real life! Becca and I hosted Ashley's baby shower last Saturday and it was wonderful! I had a lot of fun and I think the the mom-to-be did too, so it was a success. Ashley received lots of goodies to stock her nursery and has all the pacifiers and diapers she'll need for the first few months, anyway. Here are some pics:

working on 23 pairs of hands and feet for the favors

Diaper cake - pre-construction

and post-construction...notice the symmetry. we are both apparently big on that.

Post-construction shennanigans involving the common household items of a plastic firefighter and fish.

Monday, January 5, 2009

NYE 2008

Here are a few pictures from our New Year's Eve celebration last week. We went to Moe's Irish Pub in Noblesville and then back to the Sinders' to watch Dick Clark and his "Man Makeup" ring in 2009. Since Rachel has not updated her blog in 7 months (that's right Rachel, I'm calling you out :), I will give a Sinders' update and say that they have recently put a lot of blood, sweat, and tears into remodeling their basement and it looks awesome! Nice job....and I'm sorry again for spilling wine on your brand new couch. (It came right out, everyone...luckily it wasn't red.)

Friday, January 2, 2009

What happened to 2008?

I think that 2008 was the quickest year to date in my life. I think it happens as you get older, but it is surprising to look back and see that another entire year has passed. 2008 was our first full year of marriage and our first year as puppy parents. I had a full year of MBA classes and sat for the CPA exam. 2009 will be the year that I close both of these enormous undertakings. Brent spent the year holding things together at our house as week after week I came to the realization that I had too much on my plate. He is the grounding force that sometimes gets me to slow down. I'm going to try and listen to him more in 2009, for his sake and mine.

I saw this "Year in Review" format on Sara and Jerad's blog and thought it recapped the year very nicely. My version is not as short and sweet as Sara's, but I've never been short on words before and 2009 is going to be no different!

Highlights of 2008:

January - Started my rotation in Travel; had my one-year anniversary at work. Started semester two of grad school.

February - Spent time in Rome, NY for work. Celebrated Valentine's Day with Brent at St. Elmo's.

March - Celebrated Mom's birthday with Stormy in Indy with dinner at Oceanaire. Saw Blind Melon sing at The Vogue.

April - Traveled to Columbus on business. Grandma Hazel passed away; spent time in Knoxville with Brent's family. Hosted a baby shower for Christi and Peyton (what a little Peanut :). Went to a cousin's wedding in St. Louis.

May - Ran the mini marathon; took a CPA exam two days later. Left for Cabo with the Sinders the day after that and had a glorious time at the Dreams resort. Traveled home later in the month for Lucy's bridal shower. Celebrated my 25th birthday at the Weber Grill and the Rathskeller and dodged a tornado.

June - Went to Boston the first weekend in June and visited Mel - had a great time! Enjoyed Symphony on the Prairie (ABBA) and Emily and Scott's wedding. Had a spa day with Mom and Stormy on Stormy's farewell tour before moving to Philly.

July - Celebrated our first anniversary with a weekend downtown - night at the Conrad and dinner at Oceanaire. Ran in the Carmel Freedom Run in the pouring rain with Rachel and Justin. Enjoyed family girl time (plus Landon) when Megan, Landon, Lori, Bay, and Mom visited for a few days. Spent another week in Columbus for work.

August - Celebrated the nuptuals of Lindsay and Craig. Spent more time away from home for work - this time in South Carolina. Went home for an old college roommate's bridal shower. Took an awesome driving vacation to Louisiana and Texas that ended with Lucy's wonderful wedding.

September - Started semester 4; watched Purdue get beat by Oregon which started a very long football season. Spent a weekend in Chicago for a Cubs' game and swung by northern Indiana on the way home for Emma's bridal shower. Picked up Bonnie "The Barbarian" Stevenson the next day. Started volunteering at our church's soup kitchen.

October - Apple Fest! Brent drove his grandparents to Florida and I spent the same weekend in Illinois visiting with my grandparents. Bonnie keeps us up all night barking. Had the honor of being a bridesmaid in Emma and Greg's wedding.

November - Got in line at 5:45 a.m. to vote in the most historic election of all time - then found out I was at the wrong church. Still got to vote; will try to pay more attention to detail in 2009. Surprised Becca for her birthday with a weekend in Chicago with the girls - so fun! Tailgated at the IU/Purdue game with friends. Hosted Thanksgiving for the first time. Celebrated Brent's 27th birthday with dinner at Kona Grill and drinks at Muldoons.

December - Hosted the 2nd Annual Ugly Christmas Sweater Party and sponsored a family for Christmas. Spent a night in Lafayette with Brent's parents for Christmas. Bought a new Malibu to replace the leased Accord, and after much grief with the dealership we're enjoying the car now. Bonnie continued to improve in her 5th month of life. Spent the holidays in Kendallville relaxing and enjoying family.

What's Coming Up in '09 - I made my usual long list of goals for the New Year, but I'll spare you since this post is already too long. The Big Three are: Pass the CPA Exam, Finish my MBA, and Run the Mini under 2:30. I am looking forward to many events, including the arrival of Baby Bigelow, some upcoming trips, and the chance to slow down a little and spend more time volunteering at church and in the community.