Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Sandy Salton

My family has lost a great man - and although I never really got to know him, I feel like this story is worth sharing.

My husband's Grandfather, Sandy Salton, passed away yesterday afternoon after a long battle with Parkinson's Disease.  Before going to a nursing home, my husband told me that he, his father and grandfather often played a game called 500.  For those who don't know how to play, it's a 4 person card game that follows the rules of trump (ie if Hearts are trump, the Jack of Hearts is highest, Jack of Diamonds is second, then all hearts starting with the Ace are highest).  The 2s and 3s of the deck are set aside,10 cards are dealt to each person and 5 cards are put in the middle. (This game also had a Joker, which is the highest Trump)

My husband shared with me that the game was often one of strategy debate.  Did your partner play correctly?  Sometimes the hints one can drop when bidding, or laying a card first can be misread and this often sparked a debate amongst those playing.

I never played cards with Sandy, but I visited him in the nursing home a few times.  After I got engaged, my husband and I made a trip to the nursing home after a wedding shower, and I think a few times after that.  Each time, my husband excitedly wanted to show his grandfather the beautiful diamond engagement ring.  I would hold it up to him for a few moments and he would typically show an enthusiasm that was apparent despite his condition with limited speech and movement.  For reasons beyond just this - I could tell that he was a very special man.

Yesterday, after learning of his grandfather's passing, my husband wanted to teach me this game of 500 that he often played with his Grandfather, even though there was only 2 of us playing.  He said that he wanted me to know how to play so we could play it with his family this weekend.  We dealt the cards as if there were 4 people and as I was learning, my husband played the other 3 hands (trying to play as if he hadn't seen the other cards).

The cards were dealt after a practice round when I looked at my hand and realized that I needed to bid.  I thought I could take 9 of 10 tricks with the hand that I was dealt (10 is the highest you can bid).  My husband, obviously in disbelief of me being able to have such a good hand, decides I have won the bid and I took the opportunity to take the 5 cards in the middle to exchange for my cards.  At this point, I knew I had all 10 tricks, I laid down my hand and I had...

9 Diamonds and the Ace of Hearts.

Maybe I'm being silly, but I kind of feel like that meant something.  I asked my husband if I thought that his Grandfather could be with us at that very moment, and he said yes.  I explained to him that I felt he was because we were playing "his" game and that when we visited him - I always showed him my diamond.  This time he showed me his.

Friday, December 2, 2011

First Week At My Dream Job

I had an amazing first week at my new job at Iowa State.  My very first day of work reminded me so much of my orientation at ISU back in 2002.  The day consisted of me getting my ISU Card, setting up my email address and registering for classes meeting new people.  I am going to be working closely with the Department Chairs to help coordinate events, write articles and produce a monthly and quarterly newsletter, analyze data and many other things.  The job is a new position that, I like to think, I was born for.

My goal has been to work my ass off.  I have a lot to prove to make them impressed... it IS Iowa State after all.  The people I work closely with are so accomplished that my experience pales in comparison.  I can't wait until I learn more about my position and I'm able to tackle projects that are given to me on a regular basis. 

One of the things that intimidates me the most is the fact that I've been given my very first office.  The fact that I have my own walls and window and door goes kind of hand in hand with the fact that, I feel I've been given a position that comes with a lot of responsibility and I have to respect that honor.  This is one of the best things that's ever happened to me!  If you had told me 2 months ago, or even 5 years ago, that I'd be working in the College of Business I would have laughed at you in your face.  I never thought I could acheive this!!!

Please have a seat in my office.

Where I'm getting my work done.

A view of Curtiss Hall and Ross Hall from my desk chair.

Today I was fortunate enough to attend the retirement party of a secretary of the COB and a former department head.  They had 28 and 20 years of experience at ISU and the speeches given were so moving.  You can really tell that ISU has a really tight knit community and one of the speeches actually made me tear up.  But the best part is that one of the department heads (who I'm still intimidated by) gave a speech and was quite hilarious.  Laughing at the jokes of my superior made me feel much more comfortable - because now I know that humor can go a long way, even with the intellectuals! 

Now that I'm super busy with work, I'm unfortunately not going to be able to sneak in blogging at work anymore... I'm going to try and update on weekends and have the posts publish on a regular basis throughout the week!!!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Group Step

I wish I had a picture or a video of my workout yesterday to share.  I'm extremely positive that it would leave you in stiches.

I went to the gym yesterday, I had the best intentions when I walked into that Group Step class.  Little did I know that there are complicated instructions to stepping up and down and around and to the side and behind and kicking and lifting your arms.  Whew.  I was THAT girl in the class who looked like maybe something just hit her in the head and couldn't quite grasp how everyone else was doing the moves SO PERFECTLY!?  Was I in a class of professionals?  I must have been. 

Of course, my eyes were primarily following the girl up front who had to be some sort of dancer doing little extra spins and twirls where it didn't seem quite necessary.  That threw me off my game. 

Step up, down, over, other side, squats!

It was seriously the most out of place experience I've had at the gym to date.

That being said, I can't wait to give it a go again next week. 

I'm going to weight watchers tonight for my first official weigh in.  I missed last week because, hmmm what was it again?  Oh yes, I got offered my dream job and instead of going to a meeting I decided to jump up and down and scream a lot.  Last week was a roller coaster for sure as I indicated in my previous post.  However, that was no excuse for not hitting the gym even once.  So I'm back on gym track.  Luckily, I can say that even with Thanksgiving with the fam in Omaha I didn't go incredibly out of control eating every sweet I saw.  I weighed myself this morning to get a preview of what's to come, and I anticipate a decent loss.  One day at a time, no?

I start my new job on Monday.  The new job comes with new hours - 8-5 I believe, and that means I'm not going to get to go to the same gym classes I have been getting used to.  However, since I'm starting later, that opens up the early morning classes!  This includes: Group Step, Group Power, Group Centergy (haven't tried this one yet), Cardio Drill Express (whatever this one is), and many others.  I'm actually particularly excited about starting to do a Group Ride class which is essentially a spinning class, but all these "Group" classes are some kind of brand where the instructors get their plans from the "Group" people (corporation?). 

This week has also been quite a blur so far.  My last day at my current job is tomorrow.  I'm excited to blow this popscicle stand.  Honestly the work has been less than fulfilling.  Plus the pay has been rather low compared to what I'm used to getting.  Now with my new job, I'm going to be getting insanely awesome benefits and vacation time.  I can't wait to write more about working at (what I hope is) my dream job!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Promiscuous Job Seeker

The title of this blog might be a little bit misleading.  I am only promiscuous in the sense that starting November 28th I will be holding the 4th job I've had since the end of August.  Now-now, don't judge.  If you've read my previous entries about my job search, being dumped by a notoriously evil bank, starting work as a soybean dispatcher (paging Dr. Cliche Iowa Job), and now working at what can only be described as a dream job... well it's been a roller coaster.  Especially this week.  Come along with me, let me tell you the story of how I became an Iowa State University employee.

September 2011:
This Easley was checking out area businesses that are hiring, obviously checking out the ISU website for open positions.  I see a job that sounds like I could be qualified for, I take time to write a very customized cover letter, pull together 8 references from former bosses and colleagues, submit my application, all online.

October 2011:
On the first day starting as a soybean dispatcher, I get a phone call from someone wanting to do a phone interview.  Like right then, on the spot.  No time to prepare!  What do I do?  I DAZZLE her with my skills, while nervously hoping I don't say "um" or "like" more often than sounds natural in a mature woman's voice.

I ace the interview, the woman said she wanted to schedule me to meet with someone face to face for an interview.  I gladly agree to this.  I send her a thank you email with a letter of recommendation from my old boss TK attached.

Weeks pass...



November 11, 2011:  (11/11/11, how perfect?!)
I miss a call while at work from the person that I was going to have a face to face interview with.  The conversation went something like this.

Them: Sorry about not getting around to scheduling that interview we talked about.  You're clearly the best candidate in the world and we are sooooo super duper sorry for making you wait this long.
Me: Oh please, I figured you'd call - it's only natural you'd want to hire me eventually.  I'm sure you're just waiting until a new position opened up that would be even more awesome than the original one I applied for.
Them: That's exactly what happened.  So we really want to have you meet with 4 phD's, 3 secretaries, 3 other members of staff and a partridge in a pear tree.
Me: Of course, that doesn't sound intimidating at all. 
Them: Excellent, see you Monday!

Before the interview, I was really anxious - but eagerly looking for support from friends and family.

Freaking out is an understatement.

The interview started at 1:00, I was there 30 minutes early.

The interview went really well.  I built rapport with everyone - even the phD's who, admitedly, I was super intimidated by because I thought I'd sound like a real dummy compared to the intellectuals.  My favorite discussion was when they brought up my study abroad experience.

phD1: So do you still practice spanish?
Me: Not as much as I would like to, but I really enjoy languages.  In fact I'm learning German using Rosetta Stone.
phD2: No kidding!  What version do you have?  I'm learning Spanish using Rosetta Stone.
Me: I have the older version, but I understand the newer ones have even more interaction using smart phones and other devices.
phD3: You should really be learning Mandarin
(All 3 phD's laugh as if it's impossible to learn)
Me: Well I do know one phrase in Mandarin that means "How are you?"
(In case this ever comes up in an interview it's: 你 好 吗)
phD3: (who at this point I should mention he's from China) That's right.

End Scene

I really think I proved that I show intellectual curiousity by learning other languages, and given that ISU's students are from around the world, I think this really helped.

Oh, did I mention at the end of all the interviews - I met the Dean of the College of Business?  Talk about intimidating.  This man is a legend.  He's set to step down as Dean this summer - but he's done a lot of good for the College of Business, and I know everyone is going to be really sad to see him go.

After the rest of the interviews, I drove to the MU where I sat in the cafeteria exhaustedly writing thank you notes.  11 of them in total.... which you wouldn't think is a whole lot until you realize you're racing the clock to finish writing and get them to the post office before they close so the recipients should receive them the next day.

Bringing back the art of hand written Thank-You Letters.
For the record, I didn't forget to stamp the letter to the Dean.  I was very prepared at the start of this interview that I had already addressed and stamped the other envelopes so I'd have one less thing to do when I needed to send them on the actual day of the interview.  The Dean interview was a surprise so I had to buy a stamp from the post office.  This is the one they slapped on it:

So professional.

After waiting in line at the post office to buy the aforementioned stamp and to drop off my letters, I got back into my car to find a text from a former Bernstein coworker, and a GLA coworker.  Both saying they just got a call regarding ISU calling them for a reference.  Both said they gave glowing recommendations.  I LOVE THEM.  I couldn't be happier that they called to let me know this because it prepared me for what was about to come.


Oh yes, I danced in the car whilst listening to "Sexy and I Know It" which henceforth will be a song of luck and excitement.

Ok, but really, one of my friends said that as part of the glowing recommendation, they relayed that ISU was really impressed by me and leaning towards hiring me.  And that prepared me for the tentative offer I received on Monday.  Tentative - because I needed to pass a background check.

On Tuesday I received an email that required I submit my information to an outsourced background check system.  I was told in advance that it would be 24-48 hours after I submitted that they'd hear back and give me a formal offer.


I don't have anything in my past to really be worried about.  I've got good credit, I didn't lie on my resume, I haven't committed any felonies (unless I'm criminally good looking) but still I was waiting on pins and needles all damn day.  Thursday was the worst.  I had this gnawing feeling in the pit of my stomach that something was wrong.  It was really agonizing - especially when it was 48 hours since my submission for my background test.  I kept checking my phone, hoping I missed a call, or an email. 

Finally at 3:00 Thursday, I was offered a formal job at ISU.  And I definitely accepted.

So after work yesterday I went in and signed my letter of intent.  My new boss had some time and decided to give me a quick tour.  Including showing me my very own OFFICE.  I have 4 walls, a window and a DOOR.  All to myself.  Pardon me for not being able to concentrate on anything else after I found out that I was going to have an office. 

Yesterday pretty much ruled. 

Today, I had to quit my contract job.  That's a story I'll tell once I'm actually done working here (next week).

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


I'm going to do a marathon!  Not a race marathon, but a motivational "keep fit throughout the winter" program that my gym has going on. 

Basically, the premise is - go to a workout class, get "2 miles".  Finish 13 classes and you've finished a marathon.  Finish a marathon, get your name into a chance to win an iPad! 

As if I needed more motivation to want to hit up workout classes!  My goal will be to complete 3 marathons before the promotion is over.  That's 36 classes in 2 months. 

Totally doable. - That's what she said.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Work Temptations

As I promised last week, I wanted to show you a picture of what my crazy all fruit/veggie salad looks like.  Here's what I had on Friday, minus the grapes because Husband ate them the day before.

Garbonzo beans, carrots, cucumber, tomato, hard boiled egg white, apple, olive oil and red wine vinegar. 
I was full!
This is going to be my staple for a while, not only because it's healthy, but it's tasty and very filling.  Plus, my jaw is tired and and some point I'm like, when am I gonna stop eating?  It's really simple to make too.  I like to do it the night before so my lunch is ready to go and it's one less thing I need to think about in the morning. 

I usually bring a banana or two to keep at my desk if I'm getting hungry before lunch, or I'll bring an apple. 

But you know what's the worst?  OFFICE TEMPTATIONS.

Ok, seriously, how does one say no to someone that's bringing around treats that look like this:


This one looks sad that I don't want to eat it!  Just like all turkeys in real life. 
 So, how does one say no to such delicious treats.  A lot of willpower, of course... or if you're weak willed like me, you agree to take one [so as not to insult the maker] and keep it on your desk as a reminder of how you're going to throw it away later, or give it to your coworker. 

THROW IT AWAY!?  The dillema persists.  How do I throw away food?  There are hungry people in Africa.  There are hungry people in IOWA for crying out loud.  And I'm certain that there's someone hungry in a nearby cubicle.  But still the desire to not offend the creative party is there.

What if I keep it as a decoration to celebrate the holiday of thanks that is this month - or this last weekend if you're among my new inlaw! 

Gosh darnit. 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Tomorrow - It's gonna be the same

Sometimes I go a little crazy and update my blog 2 times in one day.  Some of you should be happy because I had quite the dry spell there for a while. 

I just wanted to share with you what I ate for lunch because it was insane.

1 cucumber
1 apple
1 tomato
a handful of grapes
1/2 cup(ish) of garbanzo beans
3 hard boiled egg whites
almond slices
1/4 cup of quinoa
a little bit of olive oil
red wine vinaigrette


I am full. 

Take that food pyramid.  I got my fruits and veggies all in - in one meal no less!

Oh crap, I still have a bag of carrots to eat in the fridge.  Maybe they'll have to wait until tomorrow.  But I'm eating the same lunch again.

I rule.

Tomorrow, I promise posting a picture of this.

Safari - So Good-i

Yo - Yo - Yo!

So it's not snowy anymore in paradise Iowa.  But I'm sure we're going to get hit with it hard any day now!  I'm a little excited for snow, but mostly I hate it!  I like snow when it's falling from the sky, but when it's on the ground it's gross.  Also, it hides where dogs do their business when owners don't clean up after them.  So I'm fine with the snow all a'melted today.

This weekend we're going to celebrate Thanksgiving with the Husband's side of the fam.  Should be fun because, well - this girl loves turkey!  But of course I've gotta remember that I have my first official weigh in (the one with the results from the week before, starting weigh in is just depressing) on Monday.  So I have that going through my brain. 

I know you're not supposed to do this, but I tend to weigh myself just about every morning.  And I definitely FEEL different and I can say with confidence that my weigh in on Monday should be a successful one.  I know I can get down to my wedding weight, probably before my birthday even.  The problem is I've just gotta keep myself in check.  Weight loss is sexy.  Weird right?  It's even fun to write about.  But maintenance is about the most effing lame, boring thing to write about.  Anyone want to hear the same story on the news daily?  Who cares if the DOW remains stagnant - although in these times that might be a good thing.  But what I'm trying to say is that I know I can get back to my old/new self in a matter of weeks.  But how do I keep motivated once I'm there?
Anyone have any ideas?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

First Snowfall

I woke up this morning to a cold surprise.  It was the first snowfall of the year... and it stuck - so far.  I feel like going outside with my hair dryer and just letting it run.  That'll make a difference, no? 

The bitter cold snow was covering my car.  I had to brush it off this morning.  While wearing ballet flats.  The snow touched my feet.  I got colder.

I get into my office and it's like they've never ever heard of heat.  Honestly, pretty much everyone in my office has a space heater, but we can't have one back where we sit because it will "blow a fuse".  So me and my fellow dispatchers sit in the back of the office.  Freezing.  All damn day.

I wrote this blog a long time ago

I have a post scheduled to be released today.  That's probably the problem with me just spewing my thoughts randomly whilst at work.  That means I can't tell you that this morning I set the alarm to ring 5 times with 10 minute intervals. 

Husband didn't appreciate it.

Also, dispite my trying to quit coffee, I wanted a bit today.  Turns out that the coffee machine at work is leaking or something.  So they slapped a big ol "do not use" sign on it.

Source: My iPhone camera

There must have been a flood.  Notice the styrofoam cup risers!  Something similar but unidentified under the microwave.

Quality: iPhone Camera
Of course, I'm going to consider this divine intervention.  I don't need coffee anyways.  I have my water.  And vodka.  (kidding!)

Monday, November 7, 2011

I'm angry with myself

Ok, I'm going to be blunt this morning.  I'm very VERY angry with myself.  Since the wedding I have gained 15 pounds.  I can't even believe that I'm writing that because I just felt so good about myself back then and I really can't believe a short 4 months after the wedding I let myself go like this.

So I'm confessing to everyone that I need to make a change!  I can't freaking figure myself out and it's so unbelievably frustrating to weigh myself and see such a high number compared to what I'm used to seeing. 

Bottom line is I want to get back to the point where I'm proud of myself for being healthy.  Tonight I'm going to go back to Weight Watchers because I need to make myself accountable on a weekly basis in front of a stranger and to talk to people who understand the struggle it is to maintain a healthy weight. 

The thing that frustrates me the most is that I've been working out very regularly, I haven't let that slip.  The biggest changes I can see in my routine are a) I'm not going to a trainer 3x a week anymore, and b) I don't have an event to train for.  This is one of the motivating factors behind me signing up to run the Soldier Field 10 miler in May.  I need to amp up the cardio and be more careful about the junk I let into my body.

Any you are all the first to know. 


Saturday, November 5, 2011

New Camera Needed Desperately

So you may have noticed a lack of pictures on this blog, eh? Well there is a reason for that. My primary camera as of late has been my iphone. While it provides "decent" pictures, it doesn't substitute for the actual digital camera experience. When I use my flash, for instance, you get "ghost face".

TNev in the foreground with a Pauly D wannabe in the background.

The ghostly white/orange color from the flash... this was in a well lit kitchen.

He's scary no matter what camera I use.
Another thing, with the digital camera I currently own, it can take anywhere from 3-10 seconds to take the picture after you click the, uh what's it called?  The take the picture button?  Ok, I must apologize profusely to Mr. Luker, my photography teacher and former neighbor.  For the record, I took that class because it was awesome developing your own photos!

So I need to know what to get for a new camera.  I don't know how to judge the reviews I read online.  For all I know, those people are only familiar with the old school film and photo developing centers of ye olde. 

Fast picture taking ability
High resolution
Ability to take pictures at night or in dark places like bars
Fits in my pocket
Low cost

Don't wants:
Manual film insertion
Adjustable shutter, aperature, blah.  Too much work for this girl.

Suggestions?  Whatever, I'm getting cheese fries a camera this weekend.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Library Card

Guess who's into saving money again?  This awesome chick?  Obviously! 

Ok, since moving back to Iowa (and not planning for a wedding anymore), the Hubs finances and mine are like insanely on track.  Of course we bought an awesome sectional for our living room and had to pay for a bunch of other things when we moved back but since that initial crunch, I'm pleased to announce that I'm totally loving the cheaper living in Iowa.

Here's a snippet of the list of a billion reasons why Iowa is better that Chicago-land:
-My car insurance decreased from $500ish to 250ish a month!
-Taxes are 6%
-Our apartment has an extra bedroom, bathroom and even an in home washer dryer for $300 cheaper than what we paid in the suburbs of Chicago.

Bad things:
-I don't get to see EK or SB as often :(

Before moving back to Iowa I bought a car (an AWESOME car) and now I have the ability to drive places such as the library where I can rent books instead of buying them.  Imagine that?  I haven't been this smart since I was in 4th grade. 

For the record, I've just finished Tina Fey's Bossypants, and I'm now reading Betty White's If you ask me (and of course you won't).  That's just like $40 in my pocket. 

***whistling all the way to the bar where beers cost $1***

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Food vs. Noms

I just had an entire inner monologue about what the difference between food and noms is. 

For those of you who aren't familiar with the word "noms", noms (I believe) is the LolCat vernacular for food.  Obviously diminishing vocabulary by using the sound one makes when eating something that is delish.  "Om nom nom nom!" 

Whenever I go to a restaurant, I'll typically have "noms", meaning I'll have something delicious that comes with a side of french fries.  Whereas if I eat an apple, it's just "food".  Does this make sense?  I'm just trying to help you out there who haven't quite figured out how awesome noms are, and how fun it is to say.



I suppose you could argue that all noms are food, but all food is (are?) not noms.

I'm really bored at work.

Monday, October 31, 2011


Halloween is an interesting holiday.  First of all, it's one of those when you're a kid that you count down the days for.  You plan your costume and dream about candy for weeks in advance.  You ask all of your friends "what are you going to be for halloween?" and then one of your friends tells you they don't celebrate Halloween because it's the devil's holiday.  And then you move on to another friend that doesn't think dressing as snow white and begging for candy doesn't seems devilish. 

Then you grow up a little, you're in middle school/high school and you think that you're "too old" for halloween.  You omit doing anything for this holiday with the exception of a scary movie marathon.  Not Scary Movie with Anna Faris, but SCARY movies!  With deals like "5 Movies for 5 Days for 5 Dollars" [RIP Premiere Video] me and a friend went through almost every single scary movie that store had to offer.

Then you grow up some more.  And the holiday becomes "who can look the skankiest?"  Well obviously I win:

Garth and Kat

Can you tell the difference?

For those of you who aren't familiar, Garth and Kat are a hilarious singing duo that appear on Saturday Night Live's weekend update.  They are "prepared" for their appearance and sing songs that represent the holiday season. 

Of course when I wasn't standing near Garth, I looked suspiciously like a blond version of my mother. 

Our Halloween was so much fun!  We were invited to a house party (a friend of a friend of a friend style) and it was pretty much my heaven.  This party had everything, Karaoke, beer pong, flippy cup, tons of food (including guacamole and the chicken mixed with wing sauce and ranch dressing dip that I go nuts over), a haunted house, cave men, Michael Jackson, gypsies, Garth and Kat, two referrees - a blind one and a slutty one (guess which one my husband was), Pebbles, Bam Bam and Fred Flintstone, Rainbow Brite... and I forget what else! 

I thought it was great that the people that owned the house were so generous and provided beer and food and didn't even want to get money in return.  When the night came to a close, I thanked the party host by interrupting his conversation saying "I'ma let you finish, but this was the best Halloween party of all time!" 

What was everyone else for halloween!?

Friday, October 28, 2011

Things have changed!

Ok, so basically since my last post a whirlwind occured.  First of all, I'm no longer at that job I talked about!  WHAT?!

Ok so the short version of the story is this... I worked at Wells Fargo in 2007.  When I quit to move to Chicago I gave them 2 weeks notice.  I can't remember how I gave this notice (email or a letter) but basically my manager put into their system that I was "ineligible for rehire".  Seriously, FML right?  Anywhoozle.  I was no longer working there as of the 3rd day I was there.  Sooo flash forward about 4 weeks of being a stay at home wife, I am now working at another company.  This time IN AMES! 

Because that whole "ineligible for rehire" thing was such a buzzkill I'm gonna move on to the next subject.

This previous weekend was a bit of a blur.  Friends from all across the land came to ISU for tailgating/FAC/Old People Bar Crawl.  The bar lineup went a little something like this:

Cy's Roost
Lost & Found
Welch Ave Had a line
Peoples Headliners
Jimmy Johns (Club Lulu)
Cafe Beaudelaire *
Welch Ave (for a ride home from the bartender)

*Interesting note about Cafe Beaudelaire is that they have insanely strong, yet delicious, LONG ISLAND ICED TEAS.  Me, being the smarter of the group, ordered a beer instead of one of these contraptions.  The boys I was with (Husband and TNev1) decided to raise their glass to one of these deadly drinks.  If you drink more than 2, you should probably just go home to avoid getting arrested.  This ultimately ended in one of the best toasts I've ever heard in my life.

Me, Husband and TNev1 are raising our respective glasses to toast to our billionth bar of the night.
(Note: actual quotes are definitely inaccurate as this was the LAST bar of our stop)
ME: Let's raise our glasses
HUSBAND: Cheers!
TNev1: Well, see you tomorrow (takes a sip)

I absolutely loved that night because it totally played to my college experience.  Dancing on the stage at Peoples Headliners.  High Fiving the drunkest/whitest/worst dancer/ISU basketball player just after he got done dancing "the sprinkler" and "mowing the lawn".  SHOTS!  Running into about 9287 people you know randomly. 

Of course the next day we went to my 7 year old nephew's birthday party.  I got him "Just Dance 3".  Best Aunt Ever Award goes toooooooo..............  ME.  Well in my own head.  This kid is popular!  There were about 8 other kids there along with a bunch of adults.  This party had EVERYTHING (channeling Stefan from SNL weekend update)  Dog bone cake, kitten adoptions, raising your hand if you like macaroni and cheese.  It was an awesome day!

But let's back up here for a minute. 
You: Didn't you say you went out the night before?
Me: Yes
You: Were you tired?
Me: Well, I went to bed at 3.  The husband didn't go to bed until 6. 

****End Scene****

Monday, September 26, 2011

First Day Summary!

Back to work in Iowa!  It was bittersweet going back to work, I really was getting into a nice routine of making dinner and keeping the house clean!  But now it's back to work.  So today I started my new job!  It was seriously challenging for sure... basically my job is to confirm that the information that is going to be on the loan signing documents is accurate based on the information pulled from, oh a bajillion other resources. 

I honestly can't even remember what I did today but it was a lot!  From start to finish we were jam packed with learning their MS DOS software, which is COMPLICATED.  I mean that with all seriousness.  The system is complicated with twists and turns which I'm going to need to take some time to learn. 

To end the day I went to my first kickboxing class in a long time.  One of my favorite parts of group fitness classes is the music.  I know I've heard this before (I think DW recommended it) but I wanted to share this song.
We did some hook punches to the "Touch my man again and I'ma **** you up" line, which I have to admit was kind of fun!

NOTE: If I have any boy readers, you WILL enjoy the video, I promise.

And for dinner I made some homemade pizza, which I like to call "Cheeszza" cuz I used 3 kinds of cheese (mozz, parm, and muenster).  It was yummy - but kind of disappointing because the crust wasn't really crispy.  WHAT DID I DO WRONG?

The husband is doing the dishes because I asked him to.  I love him.


Easley +

I recently left a job, which in retrospect was not too shabby with the exception of one very imperfect boss who we shall call (for the sake of anonymity) Voldemort.  I just wrote a whole blog about how much this person ticked me off and made my life miserable for 3 years when I was working with them. 

This person quit the Monday after my last day.  No 2 weeks notice, nothing.  That was her last day.

Isn't it ironic?

Well anyways, this morning I am starting my new job.  Let's just say this particular company has a type of wagon "a-coming down the street" and there may be something extra special just for me [MUSIC MAN REFERENCE].

So I'm going into this new job with an open mind and I'm going to honest to God give it a shot and be the best I can at it.  I am really excited about not working as an admin anymore.  Oh, SO excited not to be planning travel... to not have to mail stuff back and forth and meeting insane last minute deadlines.  I'm basically just hoping that this job has me challenged, and satisfied. 

Just the start of how great this job is gonna be is that despite my 45 minute commute, I found someone to drive with and he seems super fun!  He and his fiance just moved here from Virginia and are getting married in January.  It will be great to get to know another couple in Ames, not to mention the money I'll be saving on gas driving back and forth.  WHEW!  For the record, it was going to be about $200 a month plus all those miles on my new [to me] car. 

The husband is enjoying his new job.  This weekend we were actually able to relax and have some fun.  Yesterday we went to Best Buy and bought a new computer.  I'm using it right now and darnitall if I'm not plugged in whilst typing this very blog entry.  Just checked the battery life, looks like I have 4+ hours til it needs some juice!  Before actually buying the computer we went and got lunch at El Azteca, a mexican restaurant.  It was hard for me to stay away from the chips on the table but I did it.  Afterwards we went to Old Chicago and tried a few beers.  I had a Konig Ludwig Hefe Weisen Bier, husband had his favorite, Warsteiner Dunkel.  Then we picked out a beer for each other.  I picked out a japanese beer (the name has escaped me at the moment) and he ordered me a dos equis. 

More about my new computer!  I am gonna download THE SIMS and also ROSETTA STONE.  I'm gonna get my gamer on and my language on.  Special shout out to DW who sent me a copy of Rosetta Stone ITALIAN so I've got my hands full for language learning!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The Great Onion Debate

Husband and I are at an impasse. 

He LOVES onions, whereas I wish they were banished from existence.

There unfortunately is no cure for his bad breath inducing addiction. 

Minus this flaw, I have a perfect husband.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Updates in my life!

Tomorrow morning State Farm is coming to my apartment to draw blood from me and the husband.  So for that reason I am not enjoying the Leinenkugel Oktoberfest Bier in my fridge at this very moment.  Tonight it's just the husband and me watching the Charlie Sheen Roast encore presentation.  YES!  Now that we've moved I don't have a DVR anymore and therefore didn't get to record it on Monday and watch it later. 

Speaking of which - once you go DVR you never go VCR again.  Does anyone use VHS tapes to record anymore?  Our new apartment has such amazing amenities such as FREE CABLE and as far as I'm concerned I don't care to call Mediacom to upgrade as I've had issues with cable companies in the past. 

This week I went to 2 workout classes at the gym.  A Group Power class and a Cardio Dance class.  I really enjoyed them both.  The Group Power because it's a resistance training class and an hour long but the way the class is structured you barely realize that an hour has passed since you're listening to good music and kind of/sort of making sure you're doing the moves correctly.  One intimidating factor is the push ups.  Whew, I don't know how to do those very well AT ALL!  I've lost a lot of strength since the wedding due to a lack of motivation (read: I've also gained weight which ticks me off) and I need to reset my goals and get back on track.  Of course I write this after having 2 helpings of Edy's Butterfinger ice cream.  HEAVENHELPME I can't resist it's peanut buttery temptations. 

The other class being a Cardio Dance party was unbelievably fun!  The moves really got me going and last night I had a dance off with another dude at a bar who was just so excited that he wasn't the only one dancing anymore we became best friends for about 10 minutes then about 5 other girls came up and I was like, "yeah - I started this dancing trend."  We all know that no one can get up and dance until SOMEONE ELSE is dancing.  Yeah, I was "someone else" last night and started the party.  YOU'RE WELCOME

Ugh, I was totally on track with writing something else that I thought would be blog worthy but the roast is starting and my brain has turned off. 


Thursday, September 15, 2011

Gainfully Employed

It's been almost 3 weeks of unemployment since the husband and I moved back to Iowa from Chicago.  Daaaaaaang I've been busy! 

First of all, packing was a P.I.T.A. but unpacking wasn't too darn bad considering we moved into the biggest apartment I think I've ever seen.  We are living in Ames now in a 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom, 1 kitchen apartment.  We've already had friends/family over for a few weekends and it's just been soooo fun having an actual room to offer them to stay in (as opposed to couch only!).

Second of all, I've been searching for jobs - and to be honest in this economy I was super concerned.  Luckily I'm freaking awesome and just found out today that I got a job - pending background checks.  I wonder if this background check includes finding out that I worked at this company for like 3 weeks in 2007 and quit to move to chicago.  SHHHHHHH

So anyways, I'm being vague in this blog post because of the whole "pending background check" thing.  Not that I have anything to worry about - but I just kind of want that whole security badge clipped to my shirt before I start going nuts about this job.  It does sound like a really interesting position - it's NOT doing administrative work which I'm thankful for.  I'm actually going to be working on mortgage processing.  CLOSING THEM, not selling them.  That's important to note here.  So to be freaking honest, I'm kind of excited, but a little bit kicking myself for "burning" a bridge back in 2007 when I quit all the sudden during training to move to Chicago.  Hmmm I changed my name since then, will they know?  I'm gonna say yes.

BUT the thing is that this is a contract job and not a straight to hire job with the company.  

I'm definitely going to miss my current job which is being a stay at home wife.  OMG it is pretty fantastic.  To sound super close minded and snobby - I had no idea that there was so much work to do when you're a stay at home wife.  Seriously.  I have been exhausted after at least 8 hours of working, cleaning, laundry (oops told the husband I was gonna do some for him today but then I had an interview and got a job - guess he'll have to get used to doing his own laundry), dishes, cooking, organizing, working out (hells yes, I'm working out again!).

It's been pretty sweet having the "honey, I'm home" scenario daily for the husband.  Speaking of which, tonight I made enchiladas.  Yesterday was shake-n-bake chicken and mashed potatoes with a garden salad starter.  Don'tcha want to marry me?

Oh btw, I made chocolate chip cookies today.  MMMMMMMM

Saturday, August 20, 2011


I don't really write never write about fashion trends, or things I think are fun to wear... but here goes nothing!

Oh so SPRINGY butterflies!

Perfect for the beginning of winter when snow isn't that ugly brown and it's still fun!

Tattoo socks!  I like the idea of having the appearance of a tattoo without the pain and permanence that they bring.  Find em here, and I know for sure when I get a job back in Iowa I'm gonna buy some!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Post Wedding Thoughts

Now that the wedding is over and done with I am happy to say that I'm more relieved that it's over than regretting that something didn't go exactly right.  The wedding was an amazing day, perfect weather, fun music and amazing people!  I had a blast! 

One of my favorite pictures!

Thursday, August 18, 2011


Remember that last semester of your senior year when your GPA wasn't that big of a concern anymore and your homework assignments seemed like a big joke because you were out of there in a matter of days?

Yeah... what do you call that when it's not your senior year, but it's your last 2 weeks of your job?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Negativity Schmegativity

Recently, I came to the conclusion that I have become somewhat negative and mean at times.  I really hate that!  I am a nice person, SWEAR!  So in effort to make a change in my life I'm just trying to do little things on a regular basis, no make that daily/hourly basis that helps send positivity out into the world.  This is done in a somewhat "pay it forward" manner hoping that by giving positivity, it will be returned to me someday after going full circle and hopefully making the world a better place.

Last week I was having a rough day - can't even remember why now, but it was just one of those days where things just aren't going right.  Well, our FedEx deliveryman, Joseph, came in and as usual had a positive attitude.  Well I should say that I didn't know his name at the time when he came in - after years of working with this man and noticing how he's always kind and a joy to talk to I didn't know his name.  He helped me with a large delivery by pushing these crates through the office, after which I bashfully told him that I felt terrible that I didn't know his name and that I wanted to properly introduce myself. 

Joseph, my name is Elizabeth *shake hands*. 

Joseph takes off to make his other deliveries and I sat down at my desk and made a point to do something I should have done a LONG time ago.  Which was to write a glowing, positive letter of thanks to FedEx Corporate for having such a positive employee on their staff, one that goes the extra mile to help us in the office and without any complaints.  I typed up a one page letter, made sure my contact info was posted so they could call me if they had any questions and sent it via USPS (yes, sending a letter to FedEx via the United States Postal Service - the irony wasn't lost on me here). 

And there it went, a letter of positivity to FedEx which will hopefully result in Joseph getting praise from his manager or someone at corporate, which will hopefully get into his HR file, which will be instrumental in getting him promoted when the time comes.  (At least that's the end result I wish to happen!)

By being positive last week I really felt it was therapeutic - and I encourage everyone today to consider those they come across daily, your deliveryman, your cashier at Target, the kind person who holds the door open for you, and thank them for their help if they've truly helped you, write a letter to management if an employee went above and beyond, do something positive.  I don't think you'll regret it.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Moving to Greener Pastures

So it's official - the stuff that's been boiling inside me now for years can finally come out!  In 9 days I will no longer be an employee of my current employer.  Since this is a public blog I'm going to keep this generic... but anyways, I'm quit relieved to finally be ending my journey at this company.  There were times when the bad certainly outweighed the good.  I am going to miss the family atmosphere at work but I'm not going to miss certain things... (things I typed out originally but deleted in fear of the people that I'm writing about ever reading this blog).

My husband and I are moving back to IOWA.  The best freaking state in the world.  I didn't realize it until long after I left exactly why it's sooo amazing.  Of course the things that top my list are my family and friends being within driving range, ISU tailgates, beer that costs less than $9, and people that let you pass them on the interstate without appearing to hold a grudge afterwords and fight you on the road for miles at a time.

-While I'm on the subject of beer (since the topic doesn't leave my mind until long after I type those words) I remember it was VEISHEA 2008 when I came back to visit a bunch of friends.  I surprised my brother at a bar and since I was newly employed making the big bucks in Chicago I wanted to buy a pitcher.  Someone chimed in and said "woah, don't do that, the pitchers are expensive - they're $7" to which I replied "then I need TWO!"  I couldn't believe how cheap beer was - even after living in Chicago less than a year the low price of alcohol never ceases to amaze me.

Iowa Stubborn:

"But what the heck, you're welcome,
Join us at the picnic.
You can eat your fill
Of all the food you bring yourself.
You really ought to give Iowa a try."

Saturday, July 23, 2011

My Oh My

Let's see, let's see... what have I done recently...?

Oh right!


The wedding day was quite the success!  As I recall (since the day was such a blur) I started off my morning getting my hair all fixed up and having makeup applied with my sisters, best friend and now my sister in law! 

My best friend and I, once all dolled up, went to grab lunch at Cafe Beaudelaire down the street from the church.

After lunch we went to the church where we got dressed and ready for pictures before the wedding!

It was such a perfect day!  Even with some snafus (such as a can of cherry coke exploding over the back of my dress just minutes before walking down the aisle) the day was perfect.  Perfect weather and perfect music, everyone dancing and having such a great time - with myself especially included! 

 After the wedding Brian, my HUSBAND, and I went to Cancun for our honeymoon!  It was a lot of fun (minus some terrible food and so-so service).  We spent a majority of our days out on the pool near the swim up bar.  I have some underwater cameras that I'm super excited to get developed, once I do I MUST remember to share them here.

When we weren't spending time at the pool we were

At Chichen Itza
Horseback Riding
And Parasailing!
I have to add that I daredevilishly brought my iPhone aboard the parasailing trip!  Check out this video:

Now we're both back to reality and just enjoying our time back in the Midwest! 

The Newlyweds!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Bachelorette Party Pictures!

In case you missed it - I had a 90's themed bachelorette party!  In the interest of saving me a headache of trying to remember the play by play here are a few pictures!

That's right, those shoes are like 2.5 inches thick!  Oh and a hypercolor shirt.  No big.

The GLEKS Girls

Thursday, June 2, 2011

I throw my hands up in the air, sometimes.

 I don't even need to say anything.  It was just so much fun and now I want to do it again next year!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Don't ever sign up for a "free" magazine subscription...

Guess what I noticed when I meticulously scanned my credit card statement for recent purchases today?

That's right my friends, I was so conveniently automatically subscribed a subscription to Sports Illustrated Kids!  How great of them to sign me up for a magazine that I clearly never would read.  I was just delighted that without my knowledge they somehow kept my credit card on file from when I signed up to receive 3 free issues of regular grown up Sports Illustrated (for the fiance to read instead of the Journal of Sports Physical Therapy or JOSPT) when buying a pair of running shoes LAST SUMMER.  So they must have just known that I was just dying to know what a child's interest is in sports.

May I add that they used a credit card that since I received it (and since they received my info initially), I've lost (smart) and had 2 new replacements for since then.  So somehow they have some sort of round about way of keeping your credit card info on file even when that's not the most current credit card number you have.

So through some major internet digging I find a customer service number on the grown up Sports Illustrated website, I call them and they ask me if I'm sure I want to cancel.

Reasons why I don't read Sports Illustrated Kids:
-I hate sports
-I don't have kids
-That's it.

Don't try to sell me on a magazine that literally will be taken from my mailbox to the garbage without so much of a glance at the cover.  Just don't.

In the interest of passing off a lesson to my readers:


Saturday, May 28, 2011


This is what PRIDE looks like! 

Oh baby.
First of all, I want to thank Sara for asking me to do this in the first place.  I hadn't known she was going to run it I don't know if I would have gathered up enough courage to do so!  The first half of the race (well MOST of the first half) we ran together.  And quickly I may add!  Our pace for the first 5 miles was in the 9 mile family.  The hard part was the 2nd half.  At about 4.5 miles my legs were starting to tell me to walk - as were my lungs which were striving to get oxygen for my muscles!  But we were pretty much just kicking ass and taking names.

The second half of the run was very much a challenge.  If I could do the whole thing over again I would train longer and earlier.  But I still ran most of the way.  My thought going in to the race was that I didn't want to put a ton of pressure on my body so I was completely ok with walking part of the distance.  I would say overall I probably walked about 3/4 of a mile throughout the race.
Sara and I before the race!

 After the race we were greeted by our adoring public, we retrieved our swag (metal, noms [read: food], and an awesome stadium blanket that folds up nicely into a little bag.
I'm basking in the glory of the run, but also icing my knees and ankles which will undoubtedly be sore tomorrow!!!  Sadly, I think I want to do it again!  WHY DO I DO THIS TO MYSELF?!

10 Miles!

I am so stupid.

Thank you everyone for supporting me and helping me prepare for my race!  If you're looking for me, I'll be the one passed out at about mile 6 or 7 with the above badge on.  Feel free to check out the course here.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Mission Accomplished.

Today, I was given the best compliment ever.  Kind of the one everyone dreams of getting.  I had a conversation with a woman in my building.

Woman in Building: Wow, you look great!  Now do you work out or are you just one of those lucky ones that looks good without exercising?
Me:  Oh I definitely work out!!!

Basically, it was one of those things that totally inflated my self esteem and assures me that I'm doing everything right for my body and not only that but people are noticing and for someone to say that who I rarely every see... wow.  Just.  Wow. 

Now I realize this probably doesn't make a lot of sense why this was such a compliment to me.  But deal with it, cuz I'm on cloud 9.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


In the past few weeks I've been getting my ebay purchase and selling "on".  Right now I'm bidding on the perfect number for my 90's themed bachelorette party.

Oh yeah, I had one of these back in 1991.

As usual I'm not going about this outfit in a very thoughtful way, because I also plan on wearing my super "chunky" shoes that I wore in 7th grade (1997).  So I'm just going to mix and match my 90's gear, I'm sure I'm going to look more like someone who should be shopping at wal-mart rather than a bachelorette on her "last night out" (please) with her friends!  But it's going to be a riot.

Bonus:  My mom found my stash of SCRUNCHIES oh and also a fannie pack.  Jealous?

PS:  I'll update you all if I win the hypercolor shirts!
Pss:  Yup, won the shirts

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

One Year Anniversary!

Fiance and I at Jack Trice Stadium
Oh Happy Day!  I just wanted to celebrate my one year anniversary of getting engaged!!!  Our wedding is in 46 days and I am just so excited and overwhelmed!

I have some very busy weekends coming up before the wedding including 2 bachelorette parties - one for Chicago peeps and another in Iowa City, another bach party for a friend, 2 weddings, and my 10 mile run.  Yup, I don't have a free weekend until the wedding and after that we're going to CANCUN!

I would also like to give a shout out to my mom who's birthday is TODAY!  Can you believe she's only 25?


Monday, May 23, 2011


I'm glad that this previous weekend wasn't my last. 
I saw Bridesmaids on Sunday, a movie that I must highly recommend. 

Favorite Scene:
When trying on dresses

Yup, if you haven't seen it you must, if you have seen it, do you want to come with me to watch it again?

Happy Monday everyone!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

My short review of my new iPhone

I was just thinking about my new phone and how I like it compared to my droid.

The best positive I can say (although some might find it to be a negative) is that I don't get a blinking light every time I have a notification.  That means, my gmail isn't pushed through unless I open it, and I don't see if someone "liked" my facebook status unless I actually open my gmail or facebook.  All in all, it's NICE not reading your email the instant it's sent.

I think I need to be sans cell phone for at least 7 days. Ahhh someday... 

I've been blackburied.

Friday, May 20, 2011

You know what? There is no Easter Bunny - over there, that's just a guy in a suit!

Hello That Easley readers!

So I am just writing today to let you all know that I am feeling pretty damn good about myself.  I feel like I'm in shape and pretty darn near the holy grail - my goal weight.  Although I've been stuck at this plateau for ages now.  I just kind of wonder if I should do what all the fitness experts say and throw out my scale (or at least the significance of that perfect weight) and just focus on being fit!  Screw that goal of being 10 pounds lighter.  What does that even mean anyways? 

Question:  Am I gonna go around showing you all what it looks like when I step on the scale? 
I am SO not doing that cuz I weigh myself naked like any other girl who doesn't want even her hair tie to throw that number up at all. 
Answer: NO, I'm going to show you how damn awesome I look by strutting around in fun clothes that make me feel my very best.

I have a confession to make.  I'm seriously starting to like running.  It just feels GOOD to run, and running outside is like a thousand times better than running on a treadmill.  I have a 10 miler next weekend and I've gotta say I'm really pumped!

So I think I'm going to formally just announce that this blog is no longer going to be about my weight loss goals - because I kind of feel like I'm there.  I am comfortable in my body and to be honest, don't mind showing a little skin every now and then.  Of course there are parts of me that I wish I could change but I don't really mind them as much anymore.  But I still feel like talking about fitness and my troubles with weight creeping up will still be an issue I talk about because for me it's therapeutic to throw my story out there to my family and friends!  It's cheaper than weight watchers anyways. 

The reason I came to this conclusion was because I was pretty sick and tired of not having anything new to write about as far as weight loss goals.  I think that you guys just keeping up with my life in general should be enough!  Because I'm awesome.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Chandeler Bing

Could it BE any colder this Spring?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Quick Update to show you all that I'm seriously not at all bummed

Ok, so that last post ended on a depressing note.  YIKES.  And I expect that after a long lapse of posting that many of my regular lurkers (ie people that don't publicly follow me (ie the future inlaws)) probably haven't got around to reading it yet.  So anyways, I figured I'd give everyone a quick wrap up of my awesome weekend.

This weekend was rather interesting and fun I must say.  Friday night I met up with my good friend Erick and we went out for margs (see below for my "I've been drinking margs" face) and Mexican food.  Afterwords we enjoyed a night of Karaoke until closing time.  The fiance and I didn't get to sleep until probably 2 or 3 and we had to get up for premarital counseling the next morning at 6:30.

Looking good, as per usual
Saturday night was just so much fun!  I haven't had a night like that since college.  I ended up seeing some old friends that I haven't seen in YEARS, had some wobbly pops (read: beer) and enjoyed my night in downtown Des Moines.  The story behind the below picture is that this guy started hitting on me at the bar - I was like "not interested buddy" and showed him my engagement ring, to which his friend lifted his hand and showed me his wedding band.  I was like "ummm these things are supposed to repel one another, no?".  But after a few more annoying pick up lines and me going "no thanks" over and over again I got a little fed up.

Victim of my art.
This kid instantly passed out at my friends apartment after last call and started snoring really loudly.  Of course I decided that I would draw on his face because he was annoying me with his snoring and his "I can get any girl" attitude.  So, you'll notice "angry eyebrows", unibrow, kitty whiskers, and a twirly moustache.  Some of my best work if I do say so myself. 

So my friend and I decided that this kid MUST walk outside the apartment without having noticed his new temporary tats.  Our plan included removing the lights from the bathroom and covering the mirror with oven cleaner and posting a sign that says "You are beautiful!" to distract the kid from trying to see what he looked like before he left.

Operation Beautiful was my inspiration.
Of course when I woke up the next morning the first thing I did was tell him to wash his face and apologized!  So a question I must ask you, my dedicated readers:  Is it ok to draw on the face of a married "man" that was hitting on an engaged woman? 

In summary it wasn't the smartest, most mature weekend I've ever had but I sure had fun. 

I just wanted to show you all that despite that last post, I'm doing just fine because I have amazing friends who will help me have fun no matter what!  (Also: the guy I drew on was only mildly upset but said he's had worse things drawn on him)