Saturday, November 26, 2011


Did I mention that Mike and I are again getting excited about some visitors heading our way from L'Etoile du Nord...the Star of the North.  Yep, that's right, Karen and Pat are headed our way in just a little over three weeks--they're coming to check out life in the 'Burg and we're excited to share it with them.  I can hardly believe that at that time, we'll be half-way through December already (and oh so close to Christmas)!  Not only that, but that same weekend marks the end of my official ORIENTATION at the hospital...I can't believe that almost five months has already blown by, eeeekkk! Kelsey and Mike are also planning a trip out for Spring Break 2012--who knew Harrisburg was such a sought after Spring Break destination??  I'm sure we'll party like rockstars.  Either way, they'll get to kill two birds with one stone since Mike's (ahem, her Mike, a.k.a Ronaldo) mom just recently relocated to the Washington D.C. area; alas, it'll be fun family time all around!

As always, anyone else who has a strong hankering to explore all central Pennsylvania has to offer is definitely welcome in our home...just drop us a line and let us know when you want to come, we'd be pleased to have you!  Let the countdown to our visitors begin :-)

Friday, November 25, 2011

It's Black Friday, Black Friday...

Kohl's officially has my vote for the absolute worst, most annoying, gouge your eyes out obnoxious, Black Friday commercial.  And, yes...if you haven't seen it yet (i.e. if you haven't been mesmerized or brainwashed by it's annoyance already), I'm going to make you watch it just so you can share my pain, LOL!'s on as I'm typing!  For your sake, I sure hope it's only airing in this part of the country, but I'm sure it's a nationwide commercial.  I've been hearing it pretty much on repeat for the majority of the week!  Mike heard it once the other morning and (thought) he liked it...until we heard it 72 more times in the next three hours.  Seriously enough to make me want to vom and never shop at Kohl's again...oh wait, I don't shop there anyway, well, guess I won't be starting (duh!).  I can't wait for Black Friday to be done and gone so I don't have to hear this again!!!

Anyone have fun and interesting plans for Black Friday shopping? If you do, I'm sure you're already out, scoping out the deals & steals and wading through the never-ending mob of people out doing the same.  Good luck!  I'm otta here...gotta work the day away, I'm definitely excited to get some Christmas shopping of my own done, though!  (I may have already started a little online shopping of my own).  Cheers! & Happy long, holiday weekend my friends...enjoy as always!

Thursday, November 24, 2011



We're busy this morning putting the final touches on our contributions to the first annual SWEATPANTS THANKSGIVING! We're headed to the McSurdy's (in our sweats) to see if eight people can polish off a 20 lb. turkey and all the accompaniments.  OK, so we'll probably have at least some extras  for second Thanksgiving later in the night...after all, there is football on for the majority of the day.  But really, what better idea than having a nice, relaxing, low-key, smorgasbord of a Thanksgiving, in sweatpants (or any other combination of relaxed-fit, stretchy, lycra-containing clothing), with seven of your closest friends, less than a block away from your own home...SCORE!  At least we'll get our exercise on the walk over...(kidding, only kidding).  I should inform you all that the actual concept  turned into Sweatpants Formal Thanksgiving, i.e. sweatpants on the bottom half, formal attire on the top half or vice versa.  However, I've decided in my own right that dropping the "formal" aspect sounds much more inviting and therefore, I'll just be rocking the sweatpants portion :-)

Of course, much love to our family and friends back home...we hope you have a fantastic and relaxing day & we miss you as always; eat lots of yummies for us!  I'll catch you up on all of the Sweatpants Thanksgiving details later on, but first I have to leave you with a little Thanksturkey Day humor...

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Moving on out.

Well gang, we're moving again!  Now don't get too excited, it's nothing crazy-like...but it's going to be a long trip.  I don't even think we can say we're moving a whole block, more like half-a-block.  I know, we're crazy, right?  Well, here's the deal...Mike and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the neighborhood we found out here in PA but the home we're renting just so happens to be very roomy--probably much more roomy than the two of us and 10 lbs. of dogs need!  I mean, really, right now we have just about 2500 square feet...that's like 1250 for each of us (and we thought we'd downsize when we moved out here, LOL)!  We just plain old don't utilize the 3 bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms (yes, three and a half bathrooms!) that we have now.  Not to mention that I've kind of become a freak about conservation and being GREEN, so a smaller space = less to heat in the winter and less to keep cool in the summer.

As you probably know, we have good friends who live a block away (literally the next street over) with homes owned by the same company.  They're smaller (yay!!) and it just so happens that there is a family currently packing up and moving out-of-state in the next month or so (I mean they're like busy packing up NOW) could we resist!?!?!  We took a walk through last weekend--the space will be amazing for us and the size is fantastic!  It still has the same style and features we <3 about our place on Green Street...just a quick review--open floor plan, exposed brick, stainless steel appliances, gas heat and central air, second floor laundry with pedestals (bonus!), original exposed ceiling beams, etc., etc., etc!  SOLD!  (Errr...RENTED)!

We don't really have any definite details as to when this all will happen...just around the first of the year after the current renters move out and the place gets a new coat of paint on the walls.  No joke, we're seriously going to open our fence in the backyard and the fence at the new place and walk on really is that close...good thing we have great friends who are easily persuaded with food (and more importantly, BEER).  Keep your eyes peeled...I'll post photos as soon as I can :-)

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Chihuahua Dentist

Little Miss Kaia had an appointment with the tooth fairy today.  I'm ashamed to admit it, but she's gone all four years of her life without a professional puppy dental cleaning...until today...and boy oh boy did her foul-smelling chihuahua breath need it.  Lesson learned.  Not only that, but she also ended up needing a tooth pulled, poor thing :-/  I can only imagine that she's beyond pissed and probably a little sore and needing some puppy pain meds, too.  Found these pictures on Pinterest this morning; one can only assume that this is how she's feeling post-surgery...

...totally zonked

...or perhaps, completely pissed!
(This one looks a lithe more like Kaia anyway)

Could definitely be a combination of the two!  Mike's picking her up on his way home from's hoping her pearly whites will smell like roses :-)  Signing off from HBG, it's been yet another, wet, rainy, day off where I've pretty much spent way too much time on the computer and not enough time doing productive things...oh, my priorities!  That's all for now, Happy Tuesday...enjoy the short holiday week!

Saturday, November 19, 2011


There's no snow on the ground yet (at least not out here) but hockey season is in full swing and I'm pretty sure I just checked the calendar and Christmas is just a little more than a month away...yay!  It's the one holiday that I actually decorate for, so I'm stoked!  I don't have any decorations out yet, but as I've been looking around the neighborhood and the streets of Harrisburg, I've seen more than a few homes with lights, stockings, and trees already.  I guess the stores have pretty much had their Christmas stuff out since before Halloween...hmmm.  I still like to wait at least till after Thanksgiving, otherwise I'd definitely get way too annoyed with the clutter by the time Christmas actually rolls around.  To each their own, I guess.  Thought I'd take this time to share a few fun ideas and decorations I've seen in magazines and catalogs this season!

<3 this fuzzy little tree from Anthropologie...although I think when I saw it
in the catalog they had multiple sizes.  Must be popular, cause they only had
one size on the website, bummer!  Reminds me of something out of the Rudolph
the Red Nose Reindeer cartoon!

Again, more decor from Anthro--pipecleaner-like trees.  Love the little red stand, too!

What a fun idea for a bathroom or side-table.
Totally in the realm of "easy enough that I'd be able to make at home".

This is too fun! Maybe not the ornaments they chose, but I love the idea of the lighted tree on the wall!

Another alternative tree from cb2...

Chistmas-love I found on Pinterest...oh so cute! I love the little grove of trees.

On another note, Christmas this year is going to be quite lame-tastic...being that it's our first Christmas totally away from home and I'll be working.  Recall the fact that I worked last year on Christmas too.  Mike had to play santa, put on his red hat, and come visit me at work with hot Starbucks and my stocking full of fun stuff (let me tell you, that was probably one of the cutest surprises he could have come up with...I have the best hubby)!  Even worse, this year we'll totally be missing our families and the MN-love back at home.  Did I mention that it doesn't even get cold enough in PA for them to have outdoor skating rinks during the winter?  What the crap are we supposed to do when Mike and I want to play some pond-hockey?  Uggh. Truly, I'm not even sure if the majority of Christmas' here are white with snow...guess we'll find out.  The good news in all of this is that I'm not required to work two Christmases in a row, putting in my time this year, hopefully I'll be able to somewhat arrange my schedule next year so that Mike and I can make it home around the holidays in 2012 (by that time, I'll probably have a little PTO accumulated, too).  Even if it's not directly over Christmas, it'd be able to be sometime in close proximity...that's my master plan, anyway.  It's too bad people have to be in the hospital over the holidays or I'd be able to have normal time off like the rest of the world.  Such is life...I'm not really complaining, just yapping.

Familia--take note, I expect to get some emails or messages with some ideas for what you want for Christmas!! Please!! Send them to me!! If you're not already aware, possibly my very favorite part of Christmas is spending lots of time thinking of fun, unique presents for people...I LOVE shopping for presents (and keeping my purchases a surprise) way, way more than I enjoy getting gifts in return!  What are your family traditions and/or ideas for the holiday season?? I'd love to hear 'em :)  Oh yeah, guess I better get started on Christmas cards soon, too!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Pinning my life away


I hate you.  Well, not really.  For whatever reason, your virtual bulletin board is way too difficult to resist.  Seriously.  You make me waste more time on my days off than I'd like to admit...especially when my husband is out of town on business for the week.  I may need an intervention.  Who knew I could find and post so many fantabulous outfits, recipes (i.e. pictures of delicious looking food yummies), quotes, and home decorating ideas.  I'm in <3.  But really, all of this virtual posting is making me really, really wish that I had the ability (ahem...the $$$) to buy all of these lovelies and the stylist (to put together all of the color combinations, patterns, and outfits) to make my home and my wardrobe look like it came straight out of the photo itself.  Perhaps someday.  But really, Pinterest, you're making me kind of lazy and I might have to take a break...cause I don't really think "pinning" is an adequate excuse for not getting S#@% done, or is it??  I guess my house is reasonably clean, I got my workout in, and the laundry is done, whew.  Again, I think I speak for all of us when I say that you are a bit too addicting, awesomely addicting.  Plus, maybe it's actually a good thing that I'm only opposed to actually doing some real-life shopping with grown up money.  Until next time...till then, I'm sure I'll still be pinning away.

P.S.  I still haven't figured out why you must make your new "pinners" wait for an invitation to join your site...really?

Monday, November 14, 2011


I've fallen off the wagon.  The workout wagon, that is.  And if I'm going to be completely honest...I've fallen off the healthy eating wagon, too.  My current diet resembles nothing that it should.  Uggghhh.  Sometimes life gets busy, work gets long, friends are too much fun, it's too easy to just sit in front of the TV or the computer and stare, and habits go by the wayside.  Too many burgers, too many fries, and too many beers (yes...I think I just said that)!  I realize I'm not the only doubt, this happens to all of us (if it doesn't, more power to ya!)--truth is that it probably happens a little more often than I'd like and a little more often than I'd like to admit to myself or anyone else!  I guess it wouldn't be such an achievement if it were easy, right?  My hope is that maybe (just maybe) this will allow me to RESET my vision and my focus toward living a healthy life each and every day--to move my body daily and fill it with healthy and wholesome fuel.  As I write this, I realize I'm starting to sound like some self-help book...gag (I am definitely NOT anything of the sort)!

It just so happens I came across this blog post from Angela at OhSheGlows the other day:  The Workout Log Challenge.  It helped inspire me to re-focus and try to make fitness and healthy eating a central part of my life, of our lives (both Mike and I alike).  Oooooh, and she included her version of a workout journal/log to keep yourself on sure to take a look!  

It's Monday, the beginning of yet another new week.  This week, I'm determined to do something great :-)
I challenge you to do the same.  Oh, and if you're at all interested, I'd definitely be up for some across-the-country (or closer if you happen to live near me) ongoing motivation and accountability; let me know.  For now, take a peek at the Lululemon manifesto for some fresh words of advice.  Not only do they make fabulous, comfortable, stretchy clothes, their shopping bags and their stores are littered with the words of their corporate motto...more than a few of the words and phrases are challenging, inspiring, and wise.   Happy Monday...go out and conquer the world (or at least your little part of it)!  Later :)

A little inspiration and motivation from the one, the only Lululemon.
It's a bit hard to read when it's this's the larger version so you can read it for yourself :)

Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Few Things I've Been Loving Lately...

Danish Modern and Mid Century Modern furniture.  Love the sleek lines and character of the style.
Currently keeping an eye peeled for a low dresser, TV stand/credenza, and possibly a sleek, simple desk.

Lately I've been a fan of consignment shopping...perhaps it's because I don't have a lot of other shopping choices in the near vicinity.  Either way, I love, love, love this consignment shop!  Found some great steals a few weeks ago including two pairs of Banana Republic jeans and a cardigan, down puffer vest, and super-cute knit khaki bomber-jacket-style zip up from J Crew!!!  It's usually a stop on some of my "days off" during the week!  If you have the chance, check it out! 

Cleaning products.  Earth-friendly, people-healthy cleaning products...that smell good.  My arsenal includes
products from Mrs. Meyers, Method, Seventh Generation, and TWIST...but I always love trying new stuff!
(I know, I's way cheaper just to make my own, but I rarely go that far)!

Speaking of things that smell fantastic...this is hands down my favorite candle
of ALL TIME.  It is well worth the $28 dollars it costs and made me very, very happy
when I picked one up on our recent shopping extravaganza in SoHo, NYC.
(Thymes Frasier Fir is a close second...during the holidays and wintertime)

A while ago, Mike and I decided to phase out all of the Ziplock and Gladware disposable tupperware that we'd
accumulated over the years (if you don't know, I tend to be a tupperware queen as I decided years ago to stop using plastic baggies...and instead use tupperware for all of my lunches and storage).  We've been slowly transitioning to glass containers (a few at a time), but are still at a storage deficit, not to mention that most are $6.99+ each--and I store A LOT of leftovers and soups in the freezer!  Enter a savvy friend of mine who suggested canning jars...they're glass, they're cheap, and you can buy extra lids separately if they get nasty later on!  I picked up a couple packages last week at the store and am way beyond happy so far...needless to say I'll be picking up more soon!

I could definitely think of plenty more awesome things that I've been loving lately...but I think you'll just have to wait.  It's getting late on a Sunday night and this girl has to work in the morning.  Too bad the weekend has already passed us by!  Cheers to a great week ahead for everyone :-)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Funday Sunday NYC

I've been AWOL from blogging for what seems like weeks...but somehow I still have pics from NYC to share with you.  Don't worry though, I think I've just about made it through all of 'em...I promise!  Then we can go on to talking and blogging about something else :-) Right now, Mike and I are taking advantage of our day off (yay!), sitting on the couch, having coffee, and watching 'Where in the World is Matt Lauer?'.  Easily entertained, we are.

So here you go, Sunday morning (and afternoon) in NYC...

Good thing this coffee shop was about 30' from the PATH station as we got off the
subway from Jersey say we were in need of coffee would be an immense UNDERSTATEMENT!

Cute little place...loved the tiled wall <3

...even more importantly, decided I loved the neighborhood and should move to NYC!
(until I realized that I'd never be able to afford living in that neighborhood, reality check!)

We definitely saw a film crew.  Looks like a happy film company!

The crew, after refueling at breakfast!

Parking lift...this was another reminder that NYC living is spendy! least there was a Target advertisement.  Oh how I miss SuperTarget!!

If this lady knew what was good for her,
she would have gotten her shoulder out of my photo!

Cue the choir!  Ahhhhh! Did I mention that I haven't stepped foot in an Anthropologie since June...yay for SoHo :-)

So I only bought my favorite candle...but it was nice just to walk around and remember the days when I could
shop Anthropologie on a weekly basis (Mike and my checkbook are clearly glad those days are over)!

Graffiti truck

Cute little cobblestone side street in SoHo

Obviously one of my other favorites...
can't believe we walked out of here without spending a dime!

Way too many stores that I would enjoy...good thing I don't live closer!

Evolution.  Thought Mike should pose with Mr. Skeleton.

This store looked pretty sweet...apparently they have lots of cool (and weird, gross, and random) stuff in here
I'll have to make it a point to stop in next time!

Thank you, Jen, for giving me a new reason to love gourmet chocolate...
I guess it was only right that Mel and I introduced Jen to M.A.C. during the trip--
Jen returned the favor by introducing  me to the chocolate store Vosges.

Plus!  The longer you spend looking around in the store, the more samples they
offer addition to the samples (yes, whole truffles) that are already sitting out
on the counter! Who could resist!?!?  Mmmmm...chiles and chocolate, bacon and chocolate,
balsamic vinegar and chocolate, caramel, sea salt, and chocolate...I'm hooked!

...and for another random NYC...DOLPHINS RAPE PEOPLE?  I'm not sure if I should laugh or be afraid...
if you're bored or interested, google it, there's a whole website devoted to it.

She really wanted a cupcake...

All I can say is that Chinatown sucked...and did not live up to any of the expectations I had in my mind of what
Chinatown should have been (although I'm not even sure what those expectations were)

We did get to see a street vendor getting BUSTED...
what do you mean those bags aren't real???

From Chinatown, we continued on to the Flatiron district...

and EATALY.  A collaboration of celebutante chefs including the Mario Batali.
Part restaurant, part market, part grocery...lots of deliciousness!

Pasta light-fixture

Bahahaha...what a good policy!

Jake, Jen, Mike, and I took our sandwiches out to enjoy lunch outside on a fabulous afternoon
while Mel and Jase checked out the grub at the restaurant inside.  Yum :-)

Another movie...believe this scene was titled "Talk to the Sea".
Let me know if you end up seeing it in theaters somewhere, lol!

We wondered why this guy was hanging around...turns out he was in on the film.
He was just undercover as a dude with a crazy backpack.

Did I mention we were close to the Empire State Building?

Walked through Madison Square Park across the street while Mel and Jase finished up lunch...

Just happened to see a gigantic Tank-like bulldog named Pancho.  I assume he and Tank would be forever friends!

Brindle bulldog...he was seriously too cute, and still just a puppy!

This place smelled delish!  We were just way too full from Eataly.  

There were some crazy sculptures scattered about the the trees. 

NYC pigeon-in-the-park

Marimekko.  Modern.  Finnish.  Fantastic patterns.  <3


All sorts of fabulous fabric. jealous yet?

To round out our trip...what's a trip to NYC without walking by a flashmob on
your way to the subway?  You obviously can't even tell it's a flashmob from the photo,
but it was wasn't very good, either.  

Now that I've bored you to death with a thousand pictures, I realize that this probably should have been split into a couple of different posts, but I'm too lazy to go back and change it now.  Hope your eyes aren't glazed over and hope you don't have too severe of carpal tunnel from scrolling through this hour-long post!  That about wraps up our 2-day trip to NYC (which by now was about 3 weeks ago already).  I'll be feverishly saving up my money for our next adventure into the city.   After all, it's only a two and a half hour drive from the 'burg, so I have no reason not to get back there soon :-)  From my couch on Green Street...and what's turning into a drizzly, dreary, fall day...HAPPY THURSDAY TO YOU, it's almost the weekend again!!!