Sunday, May 29, 2011

The Single Life

Ok, I am going to say it:
I really miss being in a relationship!

So far I have been doing pretty well and wanting to remain single at least through graduate school. I do not want to be pinned down to someone as I graduate and look at jobs in any part of the country or the world. I don't want the drama or the stress and I enjoy having free time to hang out with friends and just do my own thing. I think because of how ridiculous (seriously!) my last relationship was, I knew I wouldn't be ready for anyone new for quite a while.

Lately though, I have been wanting a partner in crime. I have the wicked travel bug right now and literally want to visit every corner of the earth but not just alone anymore. Did that. Drove cross country doing just that and it was an amazing experience but it isn't nearly as fun as having someone else there to be in awe over earth's natural wonders or delight in the tastiest happy hours or have someone broaden your perspective on life by encouraging you to do things you wouldn't normally do. I miss that kind of stuff!

I have all these trips in my mind that I would love to take in the next few months but it just isn't as fun without a buddy. Whether it be Michigan or Florida, I have the urge to explore and see everything possible. It just would be that much more awesome with a person that can provide humor, a hand to hold, and even someone to take touristy pictures with.

*Side note: I was recently reading a magazine article about relationship baggage (that we all have) and four of the most difficult situations to overcome. I just happen to have experienced all four in the last go around....that does not bode well for this girl!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Being Perfect

I was reading a few other blogs today and they brought up the topic of comparing yourself to other people and being hard on yourself. Such tough habits to break out of!

I constantly criticize myself for not doing the things that I should or need to do. When I have those kind of days where my inner dialogue is my worst enemy, I usually get to a point where I say "I am nice person. I am doing what I can right now. It's not the end of the world." I always think back to Caitlin's Operation Beautiful campaign and feel like I am only doing myself harm with the negative self-talk. I feel like as I have gotten older and faced challenges, I gain more confidence but also realize that I am who I am. I get shy and awkward sometimes (well, awkward a lot of the time) but that is completely okay. I love, love spoiling people and making others feel good. I hate spending money on things that I don't need to. I am hard on myself but I think that is because I know I can do better.

With being "perfect" I am always concerned that I should be doing things better like all the "normal" people do. I need to be flossing and working out I need to be reading more and watching less television. I shouldn't drink soda and I shouldn't spend money on eating out. I shouldn't be doing this...that...blah...blah..blah. How exhausting!

My inner dialogue is exhausting me!

So everyday I try to think and do my best. I will never be perfect and I will mess up but giving myself some leeway is the only way that I can truly be successful, confident and happy.

It shall happen!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Hello, Florida! I am falling in love with you.

Like I mentioned previously, my posts will be pretty sporadic but I will try my best to update. Of course my main topic is food! For orientations (my main reason for being here), staff is provided breakfast, lunch and sometimes dinner. These can be healthy choices but are not always the best options. When someone is treating you to meals, I personally want to take advantage. After three weeks now of meals provided for me though, I need to readjust my thinking a bit.
This pizza is HUGE....cannot properly describe or picture.
When I usually go out to eat, it is a rare thing and I treat myself or splurge. I get soda maybe twice a week, if that, and limit myself to one per day. I won't disclose how many sodas a day I have been having but let's just say that is changing after today. I also am newly addicted to sweet tea but have found a nice compromise with the 3/4 unsweetened tea, 1/4 sweet tea combination. Thank goodness! I also know that every other breakfast, I can get this amazing fruit cup from Einstein's Bagels that I look forward to with great anticipation and for lunch, I can make adjustments to my box lunch to make it a little less carb-heavy....although I will never, ever NOT eat the cookie! Hey, it is Otis Spunkmeyer, man.

Besides food going on down here, I am also changing my attitude and my physical activity.  Being part of orientation for almost two straight days (nights and early mornings), there is little downtime to be sad, angry, or tired. I don't usually notice what I am feeling until I get home at night and finally get a chance to stop talking and be still for a while. My legs hurt from standing all day but I love, love interacting with students, my crew, and parents....although I could do without angry parents who are very much in touch with their feelings and not afraid to show it. I am taking advantage of the rec center here as much as possible to work out. With orientation schedule, we are pretty much booked all day or I am just so exhausted that I don't want to work out but I know that it is good for me. My suitemate has the best quote up on her wall: "Discipline is knowing what you want." Words to live by.

Socially...I love the people I work with. I was able to head to Downtown Disney Tuesday night and had great fun. I couldn't resist buying Mickey Mouse shaped pretzels and a few little things. I hope to head down there again sometime during the daylight to see everything! Legoland store alone was just awesome.

And.....since I just noticed all of my pictures were FOOD (ack!), I will leave you with some of my favorite pictures of campus so far.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Hello, Florida! I kinda like you.

So! I arrived in Florida last Friday and have been going non-stop ever since. I don't forsee being able to update a ton but I will try my very best to at least update with my little day trips that I am most definitely going to make time for.

Last Friday my friend drove me to the airport and I took a nice little flight from Detroit to Orlando. The ride was bumpy about half way through and the two friends I made next to me kept me pretty entertained. One of them loved all the turbulence while the other completely slept through it. I am pretty sure the armrest still has my fingerprints embedded in it. After safely coming back down to earth, I was picked up by my supervisor and suite mate (yes, dorms people, dorm living for me!) and taken to lunch at Lazy Moon pizza. So good! It is like American Dream in Corvallis, OR which I loved during my undergrad. The pizza slices are bigger than my head! No, seriously!

Anyways, I did a quick tour of the office, finished up paperwork and then finally landed at my dorm to unload everything. I definitely was a Michigander/Oregonian packing for Florida and was missing a few essentials right off the bat. After the long day of travel, I took a wonderful nap before dinner at Tijuana Flats with the professional staff.                                       

Over the past week, I have participated in a lot of training, met some amazing O-Team staff that I will be working and supervising and ate a lot of food. Almost every training day, we have had lunch provided to us by a local vendor. One day it was Moe's, the next Domino's Pizza, and another two days was Qdoba. I love, love this food but I usually only eat out once or twice a month so this has taken some adjustment. We all get belly aches because we are so excited to eat yummy and FREE food! Other days, the O-Teamers make dinner which usually resembles more home cooking that I love. So far the menus have been breakfast, Greek food, and a chili bar. All of these meals by the way, so good! Another food related: Florida has an abundance of frozen yogurt places with your choice of flavors and toppings. I was obsessed with these in Portland but Michigan has NONE! Florida is totally winning in my book!

Ok, can you tell my week so far has revolved around food? I also am learning a lot, have a HUGE amount of UCF gear and am pushing myself outside of my comfort zone on a daily basis. There has been several days that I look around and wonder "How did I get here?" and I am completely ecstatic to be on this adventure. I have some more traveling adventures lined up and am super excited for those as well!

I'll leave you with a view from my room....

My plan is to take a ton of pictures this week as I now know the campus and am much less likely to get lost! Don't worry, food will still be heavily emphasized as will my impending usage of the amazing rec center they have here. Oh yeah, I could totally get used to this Florida living.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Who Am I Shopping For?

As I have developed a personal style (or something close to a style), I have noticed that I am actually shopping for different aspects of myself. Sometimes I am buying things for the present and other times for the future. Right now, I am shopping for three different "people" in a sense.

Person 1: Average April
This is my day-to-day wear that usually involves great pants and a cardigan of some sort. I have lots of layering looks but since Michigan is holding tight to the 50 degree weather, it is hard for me to transition to more spring looks and am instead drawn to more cardigans (if you can believe...I have an obvious addiction) and long pants. Things like this:

This was actually on one of the warmer days but plenty of layering was going on.

Person 2: Florida April
I don't exactly know what to expect in Florida except for humidity so I am trying to find light, cotton tops with shorts that I will feel comfortable in. I have the shorts area pretty much covered and have bought more skirts than I care to admit but in the shoes area I apparently think I am a coordinated person because these are the shoes I fell in love with for "Florida April"

They don't look it but they are pretty tall! I also purchased these ones from Target:

It is one or the other, not both. Still trying to see which ones are more appropriate but I think the first ones might just win out because they are too cute and also the heel is made from 70% recycled materials. The Oregonian in me will never die.

Person 3: Professional April
This one rears its head usually on clearance or sale items. I see something that would look amazing in an interview or at a conference and have to add it to my wardrobe. Today was a prime example:

The picture actually doesn't even do it justice. The color is a beautiful dark blue with the lace overlay being subtle but adding some interest and texture. And it was under $8! I felt so lucky! I probably won't end up wearing it til the end of the year or early next but I couldn't pass it up. For my birthday, one of my dear friends bought me some Steve Madden shoes that would go excellently in both my typical wardrobe and my professional self.

This picture isn't the greatest but they are some pretty rockin' shoes!

I was looking in my closet today and realized that I have definitely turned into a crazy shoe person over the years. My collection of heels is astounding considering I got rid of a lot of them when I moved from Corvallis to Portland and then Portland to Michigan. I have added in a lot of flats that were functional for walking around all over campus and a pair of boots but I have a feeling I am far from being done cultivating the delicate shoe collection. Stay tuned!