Monday, July 26, 2010

Apartments, etc.

As of October 18th, I will have to be a functioning member of the "real world." Since I am actually 7 years old, this could be a problem. Either way, seeing as my job is in Reston, I'm moving to Arlington with Emily in September! I have spent 22 years in Baltimore, but I absolutely love DC. I'm so excited to have some public transportation and museums. Aside from that, its only an hour and fifteen to Charlottesville. If I really want a Take it Away sandwich or some Gordonsville barbeque, I could make that happen. My Mom and I are going apartment hunting with Emily and Peg the first week in August, which should give us a few different places from which to choose. I am usually into homemade decor, but I recently stumbled on this small company, enormous champion, that I absolutely love. Their prints and notecards are so unique and quirky, they fit right in with things I already own. I just ordered this guy, most likely for my bathroom, and saw some of their wooden animals in a home decorating shop downtown. In the midst of my excitement, I must admit the downside to living in DC, which is the fact that it is outlandishly expensive. I also need to buy a car (see aforementioned family car issues). I'm pretty good with finances, budgets, directions and a lot of apartment-based living components, but I know absolutely nothing about cars. I know its all about gas efficiency, etc, but I really think that cars were meant to make noise. Therefore, I'm not sure I believe in hybrid cars. I don't need a Hummer or anything, but I have been driving an Explorer for the past 4 years and it pretty much goes anywhere. Also, due to my small size, I like to be able to actually see things, which works best in bigger cars. True to form, the SUV/Sedan debate will probably come down to a pros and cons list. If anyone has any suggestions whatsoever, feel free to throw them my way. Between the car and the apartment, I'll be living off PB&J's, but it should be worth it.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Steel City.

As much as I try to limit my time above the Mason-Dixon line, I do make allowances for exceptionally fun things, such as weddings. My cousin Dave got married this Friday so we went up Thursday for their rehearsal dinner and spent the weekend in Pittsburgh with the Kennedy's. My Mom's entire family is from the Philadelphia or Pittsburgh area, so unfortunately that does mean a lot of Steeler fans in a very small space. It gets ugly from time to time, but there's always Cleveland to help us find common ground if things get particularly dire. Their rehearsal dinner and reception were both at the Pittsburgh Field Club, which is absolutely beautiful. Pittsburgh is at the center of three different rivers that run through the Allegheny mountains, so virtually the entire city (minus downtown) is built on inclines.That church spire off in the distance is actually where they got married on Friday. The extreme variation in height reminded me of Charlottesville; you don't realize how hilly the city is until you reach a point with a view! Saturday was the aforementioned amphibious tour of Pittsburgh, complete with a trip to the Hard Rock Cafe. I'm pretty sure the last time I went into a Hard Rock Cafe I was 9 years old on a church youth group trip to ESPN Zone in downtown Baltimore. Either way, it was cool to actually see the downtown area, including the alleged 460+ bridges of Pittsburgh (this is according to Josh, our guide, who was not wearing tour attire and made several bad jokes about Heinz ketchup, Lebron James and West Virginia).
My Mom and Aunt lived in Pittsburgh until my Mom was three, so we actually went and saw their old house in Chatham Village, a really neat part of the city that reminded me of Old Georgian terrace housing. Even though it was arguably pretty creepy, it was really neat for them to be able to sit on the steps of their old house.

In other news, the Tour de France ended today, along with Lance Armstrong's cycling career. Since my Dad and brother started cycling I have gotten really into it, going so far as to purchase a Tour de France flag when I was in Paris. I am extremely jealous of my good friend Jeffrey who got to see the last stage end today on the Champs Elysees. Jeffrey, next time, I expect a spot in your suitcase.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A few things.

1. Ironing is therapeutic. If anyone has anything they need pressed, please send it my way.
2. I love Gilmore Girls. I don't care how girly it is; the 5pm reruns on ABC family make my day.
3. 2 out of our 3 cars have died in the past 24 hours. The remaining working car resides in Delaware with my younger brother. My father has since rented a car (allegedly a Dodge Charger?) so that we will make it to my cousin's wedding in Pittsburgh tomorrow. The death of the green wagon is particularly tragic, as it is a part of many a high school memory (see below)

4. The aforementioned wedding includes an amphibious tour of the city of Pittsburgh. After watching a tragic news story about a "duck boat" that was leveled in the Philadelphia harbor by a large ship, my aunt remarked, "I've always wanted to do one of those," and promptly signed us up for one in Pittsburgh this Saturday.
5. I have finally convinced my parents that half-caffeinated coffee serves absolutely no purpose, leading to the necessary purchase of some Dunkin' Donuts original.
6. The John Adams Series: If you haven't, you should.

Monday, July 19, 2010

305. Don’t be so eager to leave the kids table.

Earlier this semester, I stumbled upon 1001 Rules for my Unborn Son in a bookstore in Charlottesville. The description of Walter Lamond's book reads, "Boys need rules. One man's instructions for raising a thoughtful, adventurous, honest, hardworking, self-reliant, well-dressed, well-read, well-mannered young gentleman." Lamond takes it upon himself to record these 1001 rules before he "becomes old and uncool." While the book itself is witty, quirky, and downright accurate, what made it even better was that Lamond created an online blog version. After spending hours perusing the pages, here are a few of my personal favorites of the first 500 or so:

22. Girls like boys who shower.
23. Learn to tie a bowtie.
35. Crabs are Chesapeake Bay Blue Crabs, steamed with Old Bay. No exceptions.
47. Watch a lightening storm from a safe spot. But watch em.
49. Call your mom.
59. Socks are not necessary in the summer, no matter how formal the occasion.
85. Learn to sail.
99. Nothing good ever happens after 3am. I promise.
140. Never sit down on a ballfield. Take a knee.
154. Ask your mother to dance.
161. The keys to throwing a good party are a working stereo, Christmas lights, and plenty of ice.
181. If you ignore history, it will ignore you.
189. Learn to drive a stick shift.
212. Make yourself useful on a boat.
229. Write letters. On paper.
233. Go down fighting.
258. No vanity license plates.
272. If the teacher forgets to assign homework, keep quiet.
281. You aren't done raking until you've played in the leaf pile.
288. Believe.
304. If you choose to wear a tie, commit. Button your top button.
332. Suck it up.
345. Remember the Alamo!
352. Don't wear a club tie in England. They mean something there.
384. All drinking challenges must be accepted.
408. Don't let a wishbone grow where a backbone should be.
410. Sometimes your best bet is to bet on her.
418. Go Navy. Beat Army.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

"A nice girl with a lead foot."

I have become a regular in traffic court. After a near pristine driving record (aside from an unfortunate incident the first day of my Senior year of high school), I got two speeding tickets, in two weeks, in two different states. Needless to say, I had to make my way back to the middle of nowhere North Carolina to attempt to explain myself and see if they would reduce the $200 fine. To those of you ever contemplating a road trip though NC, I do not recommend a stop at the Kenansville courthouse. In an attempt at efficiency, they decided to run traffic court and criminal misdemeanor court simultaneously. Definitely an interesting experience. They took $20 off my ticket though, so that made the 8-hour trip completely and 150% worth it. My more recent ticket took me to Charlottesville, but honestly, any excuse to go to Charlottesville is fine by me. About an hour through, the guy about 4 rows back fell asleep, and started snoring really loudly. Anyone who knows me in the slightest can imagine about how long it took for me to start laughing. Even after I got it out of my system, I continued to crack up to myself for a solid 15 minutes. I'm pretty sure both the judge and the police officer held my juvenile tendencies against me, because this trip went about as well as the NC trip. I got a Bellair sandwich out of the deal and a wonderful overnight in DC with Heather so I'm not particularly upset. Now back in Baltimore, I'm currently reading I am Charlotte Simmons (by way of recommendation). Though very interesting, I am about ready to kill Charlotte Simmons. Major diva.