Monday, May 30, 2011

Love is in the Air!

Hello, faithful and patient readers! I know I promised I would write on Friday, and I really and truly tried (via the Blogger App on my phone--from the rehearsal dinner), but for some reason the blog didn't come through, so I will update from Friday to today.

So, Friday afternoon I had the pleasure of attending a bridal luncheon hosted by some wonderful women from my cousin's home church. It was beautiful and sweet and light and colorful and full of love, just as a Kentucky bridal luncheon would be expected to be. We had chicken salad (and I ate it, even though it contained my arch nemesis, mayonnaise-- the sacrifices we make-- and it was good!), a summer salad of spinach, walnuts, strawberries, goat cheese, and a vinaigrette, mini apple muffins, and mimosas. All of this was topped off with what else (in Louisville, KY), derby pie from the original bakery where derby pie was invented. YUM! Kelley gave her bridesmaids some wonderful gift bags, the mother of the groom a beautiful frame, and her mother a ridiculously chic Kate Spade purse, which was well deserved.

After the luncheon, I helped my grandmother prepare her condo for the next day's brunch. I had a total AT&T "Wow isn't my smartphone handy!" moment. My grandmother has fine china and silver for these types of events, and I was assigned to assemble the place settings. Of course, I wanted to do it right and save face for my mother who would be mortified if I didn't know how to properly set a table, but I wasn't 100% positive of some fine details. So, I turned to Google Image: "Proper Place Setting". Mission Accomplished. Granmitty was none the wiser... I was sneaky. :) I would never want to disappoint her, either!

Later that evening, we attended the rehearsal dinner at the Theater Marketplace in downtown Louisville. It was absolutely incredible. What I love about these types of events is that they seem to brighten the spark between existing couples, and I like watching people be in love! I'm not sure if any new sparks were ignited, but the spark between Kelley and Nick was blindingly apparent. Nick is a really awesome, unassuming guy who I am really happy to have in our family now. The maid of honor gave a speech that made me cry (of course) and the best man exhumed some memories from his and Nick's younger days together that got a lot of laughs from everyone. It was the perfect mix. My dad asked me why I cry at weddings, graduations, public performances, etc., and all I could explain was that my reactions do not discern extreme happiness and other emotions, so I just cry. I am a happy crier more than a sad crier, and when people publicly profess their appreciation for others, or share their accomplishments or talents with others, I find that to be a highly emotional experience! So, I cry. I don't know what to do with my mouth when I'm happy crying, so I'm glad I never have to see what I look like. It wants to smile, but the muscles are focused on keeping the tears from streaming everywhere, so a smile is not quite possible, and I am positive I look as though I need some kind of physical rehabilitation. God bless my soul when a photographer is catching all of this at my own wedding. I digress.

Saturday morning, my grandmother hosted a fantastic "Wake-Up Brunch". It was darling. In true Texas fashion, she had more than enough amazing, cheesy, delicious food. Everyone gathered for one last relaxing moment before the madness begun! After the brunch, my Aunt Terri summoned me for my "day of" duties. She gave me some cash and a list of some quite obscure items which I was to procure from all corners of Louisville. They included:
  • Scented talcum powder with a puff
  • Foundation make-up foam wedges
  • 3 Size E crochet hooks
  • Cake boxes large enough for 75 servings of cake
Wait-- WHAT?! I am responsible for the choosing the bride's earrings-- on the day OF the wedding?! How can this possibly come at the end of that list?!

Well, I am happy to report, I successfully gathered all of the listed items on time (early in fact!) and to the satisfaction of the mother of the bride, and more importantly, the bride. Sweet. I got back to my dad's with some time to spare and spent an hour soaking in the bath tub.

We arrived at the church and my job was to hand programs to guests as they entered the church, and to encourage them to sign the guestbook. Well, this went off too well because there ended up being a line about 100 people long of guest book signers. Alas, the string quartet cued the start of the ceremony right on time. (Insert teary eyes here.) My cousin truly took my breath away. She looked her absolute best- the way any woman would want to look on her wedding day. Her dress was the dress of dreams (I think she told me it was inspired by Grace Kelly's wedding gown), and as she walked down the aisle, guests couldn't help but ooh and ahh. The ceremony was officiated by a childhood friend of Kelley's who is now a youth minister, and it was her first wedding! She did a fantastic job, and she made the ceremony extra special with her ability to relate to Kelley on a personal spiritual level. The bridesmaids all looked beautiful and prim, and the groomsmen looked dapper in their tuxes. Nick beamed with pride and love and smiled ear-to-ear for the entire ceremony (and into the night).

The reception followed the ceremony, and was hosted at the Brown Hotel. I can't think of any other way to describe it than "Movie Wedding". There were about 250 guests, a live band that played everything from Jazz to Journey (flown in from Nashville), an amazing ballroom with too many crystal chandeliers to count, ceilings 50 feet high with the most beautiful and intricate molding I've ever seen, delicious and endless wine, and happy faces and bursting hearts from wall to wall.

We danced into the night and the party continued for the 20-somethings at a bar downtown. We discussed Kelley and Nick even after they had departed in their horse-drawn carriage. The night was truly dedicated to their love.

Love, supportive family, and loyal friends are the most wonderful gifts we receive in this life! Thank you, Kelley and Nick, for the reminder.

Sisters- Biological and Sorority
Dan and Ema-Lou
The bride, finally letting loose! :)
The guests
The beautiful bride (She had a very long train and vail for the ceremony)
Dad and I
Regal ambiance
The FOOD (Oh, the foood)
I hope you know your manners with these place settings!
Cousin Ema and I
Boy cousins
Off they go in a horse-drawn carriage!

Thursday, May 26, 2011


This is going to be a short post because I am VERY tired after a long day of helping with wedding preparation followed by helping Granmitty (my maternal grandmother) prepare for her special brunch on Saturday followed by running errands with Dad and Dan. Whew. We just had some Italian at a place down the street from my Dad's and my eyes are burning and wanting to close! I will update tomorrow with more, but I wanted to stop in to say hi to my beloved readers! More up tomorrow- I promise!



Do I look as tired as I feel? *yaaaawwwnnn*

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Ashleigh/The Famine/Wall Art/Prepping for the Road!

I have a good friend named Ashleigh. She is one of those neat souls who really and truly follows her heart and isn't afraid to be a little bit lost or homeless or without an anchor. I envy her bravery. She does the kinds of things I talk about doing... from the comfort of my home. Recently, she decided she wanted to move to Dublin- a city she fell in love with on a short study abroad experience. So guess what she did? She up and moved! From what I understand, she had a mere sketch of what that entailed, but she had faith in people and in the world and she now lives there. And guess what else? She is fine and happy. I need to take notes from her. Love you, Ashleigh! You can follow her adventures (and misadventures [*wink]) here. Can't wait to visit you, Ashleigh! You are an inspiring person.

Speaking of Ireland-
There is a famine happening in my refrigerator and in my cupboards. We have almost literally NO food. I was hesitant to buy and food yesterday because we are going out of town for a week tomorrow (Wednesday), and what I typically like to buy are fresh foods without boxes-- i.e., stuff that spoils. So, I was left to be industrious with what I had. What I had were these ingredients:

For dinner, cheesy garlic potatoes with caramelized onions.

A friend came over and said, "Are these instant?", to which I replied, "No, I made them from scratch", to which he replied, "Okay, 'cuz I was gonna say... they are awesome!" So, mission accomplished. Not very healthy, but that was it for dinner, so I guess fat, carb, and calorie-wise, it was alright.

Yesterday I also hung the painting up. It looks good! Can't wait to be in a place with white walls where it will really pop!

Today, Dan and I are prepping for the road. On the agenda:
  • Oil Change
  • Clean the truck
  • Pack
A big pile of owwie.

I got a trenta iced coffee at Starbucks to start the day. It's a new size and it is no joke... it was nearly as long as my forearm.
Please disregard the ugly steering wheel cover. My friend Mollie says it looks like a spine.

I have begun my packing and I am already worried about how all of my stuff is going to fit in the cab of the truck and not get all wrinkled. Oh--I guess I should mention why we are going to Kentucky! We have a good deal of family there now, and one of my dearest cousins is getting married! She lives in D.C., but she is originally from KY. Our dad lives there, as do our grandparents and my mom's twin sister and her son (not for much longer) and her husband. My dad says it rains all the time there, but I hope it clears up for my cousin's big day! Kelley, the bride-to-be, is a lawyer, and Nick, the groom, is also a lawyer. They are Vanderbilt and Harvard grads, respectively, so obviously they are both dumb as rocks. I can't wait to see my beautiful cousin glowing in white! I have been assigned the job of Wedding Day Chaos Coordinator... I will definitely be updating you on how that goes! I like to think that since it's not my wedding day, I will be able to come from a place of calm and logic. We'll see...

Sunday, May 22, 2011


So, after I posted on Friday I went to the pool and got nice and brown! :) I laid out with Brittany and Phil, and we talked and listened to music, and swam around a little. Before we'd gone out I hadn't really eaten much, so I was ready for an early dinner! Because I had no groceries (literally, almost nothing whatsoever... except a lot of condiments and salad dressings), we went to a wing place across the street from my complex called Hurricane Grill and Wings. It was delicious. The owner remembered that I liked his Greek salad last time, and brought it to me again. Really nice guy. Brittany's husband, Spencer, and our friend Pat met us over there too, and we started thinking about what we'd do that night.
We ended up going to a truck pull. I hadn't been to anything that country in years, and it was a blast. The way it worked, from what I could tell from the sidelines, was that the people who entered their trucks in the contest did a single-elimination tug-of-war between their truck and another truck. I think they were connected by a tow rope or something of that sort. It was loud and crazy, but something different. Brittany and eventually made our way inside and watched people line dance. She gave it a try, but I didn't because I've given it a try before and it can be downright embarrassing if you don't know the steps! After about 5 minutes, I think she'd figured that out for herself, and she was back to sitting next to me, watching.

Truck vs. Truck! (Can you guess which one won?)

Brittany and I at Truck Wars.

Yesterday (Saturday), I did almost literally NOTHING. I cleaned a little, but not much, and spent the day watching documentaries and a few movies. The end.

Today, I woke up and wanted to get some stuff done since yesterday was such a bust (albeit a great one)! So, I folded and hung a bunch of laundry and stitched some things that needed stitchin'. Soon enough, it was time to go to lunch for Phil's mom's birthday. We went to Olive Garden, so of course I got the soup, salad, and breadsticks (but really just the soup and salad). Is there anything better than their salad? It was a nice lunch with Phil, his mom, her mom (Ruth), and their close friend, Marianne. I love Marianne. She is a firecracker from New York and always has funny stories about putting people in their places. At lunch, Phil's mom gave me a graduation present-- a new charm for my new Pandora bracelet! It's an apple and it was on my Pandora wish list! I was so surprised and I am so thankful! It's so cute.

My new little apple on the right! The twirly guy in the middle of the K and the A is a snake, for nursing (The bracelet and the first 3 charms were a graduation gift from Brittany!).

When I got home, I finished folding and hanging (keeping in mind what I would bring on my roadtrip to Kentucky with my brother this week! More on that later.) and once everything was in its place, I was ready to paint! I have wanted something fun to replace the painting in our dining room, so I kind of just started with which colors I wanted to use and went from there. When it comes to painting, I never really have a crystal clear image of what I want, because even when I think I know what I want, it turns out differently because of where I end up creatively. It's a fun, therapeutic, and rewarding process!

24"x36" for our dining room. (On my painting tarp... I need an easel-- and mess-proof studio!)

Anyhow, Dan was out of town all weekend, but is home now and I am happy to have him back! I missed his jokes. Hope everyone has a happy evening tonight and a smooth Monday morning tomorrow! (Too soon?)


Friday, May 20, 2011

Happy Heart

This was a really great week. A bunch of times I had a moment where I had an overwhelming sense of peace. You know that feeling where you just feel the physical sensation that comes from the inside that makes you feel so happy? Like, yesterday when I was making coffee after I had dropped the kids off at school, I got a whiff of the hazelnut flavored grounds (which my brother loves- for me, it's a last resort... we were out of Columbian) and I just felt so happy. I felt happy that he liked that flavor, as silly as that sounds. I was just happy.

It ain't that bad. :)

When I lay around a lot and wait all day for the night so I can go out with friends (as much as I love them), I get depressed! I like my days to be filled with tasks and activities and projects, etc. My Kaplan class this week was the perfect activity. Believe it or not, I really ended up enjoying it! I feel so much more confident for my boards. I have a lot more practicing to do, but I think I'm gonna take them on 7/7/11 (if that's available). Sounds like a lucky date, doesn't it?? Plus, it's almost exactly 2 months from my graduation date, and it's suggested you take the boards 8 weeks from the date of graduation... lucky + suggested = a good date.

On another note, I think all of the kids approved of my role as stand-in Mommy. I had no idea how to gauge the time I needed in the morning to get them ready and deliver them on time. I figured it would be best for me to get up and ready (somewhat) first, so I got up at 6:30 and was ready around 7. Then, knowing how waking up kids can be, I started waking them up at 7 (even though they really didn't need to be up til 7:30). I'm glad I did that. The boys were stubborn. Annabelle was up with a smile and cuddles and kisses. I had picked out an outfit for her, but of course she wanted to pick her own outfit. She got ready, then I had her come with with me to wake the boys up. Of course, I brought the dog in too... dog licks and sister hugs were the charm (even though the boys were squealing, and, well... yelling at all of us)! Anyway, I managed to get them ready, make a little breakfast, and finish up a tiny bit of homework and get them to school 10 minutes early! I was proud :).

Annabelle on the way home from gymnastics, with her Icee. (I made her fix her seatbelt after this picture was taken!)

Hello from the backseat! Thank you, Annabelle!

After that, I took my Kaplan NCLEX Readiness Exam and got a 95% chance of passing the State Boards! Yay! :) It was a really good day. I can see why parents feel so much fulfillment even though they are extremely exhausted at the end of the day.

Today, I have been cleaning the apartment (laundry, kitchen, dishes, vacuuming, etc), listening to country music (guilty pleasure and great to sing along with), and doing a little test review (not much). Brittany, my best friend here in Orlando, and I are going to the pool after I run some errands! It has been a great week.

The view outside my apartment this morning... ready to bronze!

Impatiently waiting for Britt! How weird is this??

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Playing Mommy

So sorry I didn't post yesterday! The past 2 days have been a tad hectic. Thank you to all my early, O.G. friends who are reading this new blog for keeping up! Yesterday I had my Kaplan class all day and afterward, I was YET again pathetically tired. I think it has something to do with my diet and sleep schedule, so from this point forward, I'm taking it easy on the cheese and land animals and shooting for my 8hrs.... oh, more water, too.

Today I had class again (done tomorrow!) and on my lunch break I had to run home, take some clothes out of the dryer, and pack a bag for overnight babysitting. Last summer I was a nanny full-time for the most awesome family with three kids 5, 10, and 13 (at the time--2 of them are a year older now!). They are so good to me- flexible and laid back. Anyway, the momma asked me to watch them overnight so she could attend an important function with her husband out of town, so here I am. Judson, the middle son, told me I was like a mommy... I was so flattered!!! He said, "You act like a mommy, you do mommy stuff, and now you have a real job like a mommy!" I thought that was so cute. He is such a sweetie. After I picked the kids up, they went outside to play for awhile, then I took Annabelle to gymnastics. While I was there, I watched the older girls (I'd say about 14-16 years old), and WOW- I would LOVE to be as in shape as those girls! Really amazing. Inspiring!
After gym, we all went out to dinner at Subway, which was a strange pick for our group... in all of the many, MANY times I have taken them out to eat-- never Subway. I felt so bad for the people behind us in line as 3 kids tried to choose what they wanted on their subs, their chips, etc. Oh well, I think everyone there thought I was their mom, and I look rather young for 3 kids their ages, and I don't have a ring on my finger, so maybe they felt bad for me. Whatever. With all of the kids I've nannied (6 total), I've really gotten a sense of not giving a ____ as long as the kids are being polite and not fighting or breaking things. Oh- and a tip for dealing with temper tantrums in public places: WALK AWAY. Works like a charm. They might keep crying, but they will stop the screaming and whatnot. Anyway- no temper tantrums tonight! Really, it only happened with the 5 year old over the summer (usually when she was tired or hot), and she has matured so much in Kindergarten! I digress. (<--Katie, that was for you.)
Anyway, by 9:3o, all the kids were in bed, off to Dreamland.
As I lay here, "Good Luck Charlie" is still playing on the Disney Channel, and surprisingly, I'm not itching to change the channel. I am also feeling tired, which is really never the case at 10:30 (In reference to my 5pm lull mentioned earlier, that is just a terrible time of day! I try not to nap, but my "second wind" usually kicks in around 7 and then I manage to stay up til Midnight or later.)
Tomorrow, I will be getting 3 elementary aged kids (1 in K and 2 in 5th) ready for school in the morning. That will be VERY mommy-ish. Hopefully Judson will approve of my performance! :)
Goodnight friends and mommies!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Creepy Stores

Starbucks again! Very Monday! It was so pretty out and I loved the way the sun was hitting the straws... they looked neon!

When I got back from class I was SO pathetically tired. The past few weeks I haven't had to really do anything in the morning, so I've been staying up with my nocturnal brother, sleeping in til 9 and beyond. Today I had to get up at 7:30 for class, and I couldn't get to sleep til around 3am! Anyway, I was all about my iced coffee today, as I mentioned before! This evening Dan and I went to Startbucks to enjoy a coffee and the unseasonably cool weather. It is cool and breezy out! Usually here in Orlando, it's balmy and sticky (repetitive?) and hot out til dark. After that we took a bunch of coins he had gathered to [a brand new] Publix (brand new Publixes are the best) and guessed how much it would be. I guessed $14.73. Like a loser, he guessed $14.74. It ended up being $17.63... I got 3 of the numbers right! Haha. After that we went to Family Dollar because I like to go to semi-creepy stores like that (Big Lots, Bealls Outlet, Dollar General) and see what kinds of weird stuff they have. We left with toilet paper, a bottle of handsoap, a temporary tattoo from a quarter machine (think two tigers with huge claws growling around a yin-yang), and a "Pre-Viewed" movie... very creepy-store-esque purchases, I'd say. We laughed at a lot of the weird, chincy "home decor" and the questionable generic foods they had. We also noticed they had quite the array of "mini" things... mini lawn chairs, mini tiki torches, mini grills... I told Dan we should have "Mini Fest" in our itty bitty front yard. Imagine how creeped out our guests would be! I laughed really loud-- which reminds me, Creepy Stores are always SO quiet! It's so weird.

Gotta watch the Jersey Housewives and hit the hay! I want to work out before class tomorrow, so I certainly can't be up til 3-freakin'-am again! Night night, friends. :)

"Who are you?" Monday

So this morning I started my Kaplan review for the state boards, aka NCLEX. I took a diagnostic exam last night and according to my professor, my score correlates with a 94% chance of passing. Still don't see how that's true, considering every question we've gone over (almost), I have gotten wrong, but okay. I have plenty more time to prep! Anyway, I got there like 10 minutes before class and took one of the few available seats (overachievers arrived earlier than me!), which was in the back. Anyway, as I am trying to stay awake and focused (side note: one of our professors told us an adult has a 30 minute attention span... this class is 6 hours a day for four days straight), I started looking around the class to see who I knew (okay, so I wasn't that focused), and there was a girl sitting catty-corner to me who looks SO familiar! I knew she wasn't in my nursing classes, but I am sitting there thinking, "Where the hell to do I know this girl from?". I wonder if she is thinking the same about me.

Graciously, our instructor gave us an hour lunch break, so I headed where else: Starbucks. My awesome Aunt Cindy gave me a GC for my graduation (THANK YOU!!), so I figured I'd grab a bite and a Venti Iced Coffee (yum). Anyway, I sit down to write this little diddy here and the girl across the table from me goes, "KATY!?". I look at her, smile with a quizzical look on my face, and shamelessly say, "Yeah! Hey!!". She senses my... idiocy... and says, "Do you remember me?" I recognize her face, so I fib a little, "Yeah, of course!" She interjects, "From Spencer's party!"... Okay, I am caught up at this point, aside from the name. Of course I pull out the Exhaustion/Need For Coffee card like any good American and I think she buys it. Anyway, two episodes of "Where do I know her from?" back to back. Thank goodness for this:
My coffee with my name spelled incorrectly (can't blame 'em) with my little lunch box--Starbucks has some healthy options, finally! Yummy and just what I needed to keep me awake and ALERT for the last 3 hours of Kaplan! :)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Simple Sunday

I slept in this morning and woke up knowing I had plenty to do today. First of all, I almost always without fail clean on Sundays in order to prepare for the start of a new week. Even last weekend when I had truly nothing to do all week (commitment-wise), I cleaned countertops (I do this every single day), put away dishes, vacuumed, and washed towels and such on Sunday. I think that starting the week with a clean slate is important-- well, it is for me, anyway! If you clean once a week, it is really easy to maintain, plus you know what you already have (groceries, clothes, etc.) because there is less clutter. Living simply is becoming more and more important to me the more intangible things I have coming into my life-- career, bills, relationships, etc. All of those intangible things take up enough of my energy!

I convinced my brother, Dan, to have a "fest" tonight. We started doing these "fests" about a year ago I would say-- it started with Dip Fest. (I giggle as I remember it) Dan went to Publix and got like 5 different types of chip dip and a couple different types of chips and set them out and that was what we had for dinner. So unhealthy (I think I opted for a baked chip... at least I hope I did), but it was a bit of a novelty and it has made for a funny memory. We continued on, pretty much weekly, having these "fests"... Asian Fest, Mexican Fest, Italian Fest. I tried to start calling them "family dinners", but that didn't really stick. Whoever spearheads the fest buys the groceries and does the cooking, so I'm happy I convinced Dan! :) Free dinner! Tonight is Curry Fest! He makes this awesome curry that is like the curry at CoCo Curry in Japan. I will upload pictures later-- he is an awesome cook! My favorite thing to make is enchiladas... I have gotten really awesome reviews from dinner guests, but it is so unhealthy! Definitely a special occasion type of meal!

Oh- back to the cleaning thing. I have one small piece of advice for everyone: Make your bed every day! You will thank me. It makes such a huge difference! It makes your room look nice, it is really cozy to curl up in later in the day, and you won't go shuffling through your sheets in a huff making a big mess looking for your keys or cell phone when you are trying to run out the door! I think one thing I will look for in a future boyfriend is a fellow bed-maker. :) Just kidding... kind of.

Here are a few "views" I really enjoy around my place... we don't live in the lap of luxury (despite our complex having the subtitle "Luxury Apartment Homes"--what a joke), but with a little TLC, any place can be warm and sweet and homey.

Our awesome turntable and LP collection (and my first diploma).

The view out our kitchen window. Makes doing dishes less of a chore. Nothing special, just nice.

Our sweet little dining room. I changed the fabric on the seats, and I love it so much. Flowers on the table are from Dan, for my graduation.


Guys, I'm back! I am so happy to be blogging again. Lots has changed since Katy-Apple-A-Day (which was fun while it lasted). I have graduated from nursing school (yay!) and will be starting a career in Oncology shortly! I am so excited and I am positive there will be plenty of trials and tribulations to share. Hopefully some funny stuff too (not that cancer is funny- you just have to find humor in life, especially in the face of difficulty!). I am still single (snooze) and still living in the same place, although I am happy to report we will be moving to another apartment soon.

Basically I wanted to start this new blog because I really love to read other people's blogs, and I feel it's only fair that if they are out on Front Street, I should be too! :) Plus, I am just the kind of person that has a lot to share and I need an outlet for that (I don't feel that at 25 years old Facebook is the place to do that anymore). Also, there are lots of changes coming up in my life and I plan to use this as a sort of scrapbook for my thoughts and photos and milestones. If you have found me once again, please feel free to follow (I won't think it's creepy) and respond to my posts at will! I plan on keeping up with this blog much better than I did with Katy-Apple-A-Day, but before I deleted the ole gal, I found these awesome stats:

How awesome is that? If that's not motivation to scream from a proverbial mountain top all the intricacies of my life, I don't know what is! I love it. Thanks for coming back! I'm hoping people will trickle in!