About Me

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A 30-something living in the foothills of the Virginia mountains; I'm saved by grace, addicted to coffee and my little sister is my best friend! I devote most of my time to exploring, reading, attending as many Nationals games as possible and documenting life here. My Prince Charming got lost somewhere along the way...but I'm trying to remain hopeful that true love exists.

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Friday, June 30, 2017

Five on Friday

Nationals Baseball - It's been a week...*sigh* My Nationals are a good team, but they could be a great team if the bullpen could ever get it's act together. At least I was able to commiserate on Thursday night with a Giants fan - I hear their bullpen is just as tragic. The bullpen blew a 4-2 lead over the Cubs on Thursday night...must to the rage and heartache of every Nationals fan watching.

In worse news than the bullpen; the resident speedster, lead off batter and master thief (when it comes to stealing bases) Trea Turner, was hit on the wrist by a pitch...and has a fractured wrist. He'll likely be out 8-10 weeks at best. The season is almost halfway over and the Nationals still maintain a 9.5 game lead in the National League East. Here's hoping the team can adjust and keep winning!

The sidelined speedster in action...

Weekend Plans - I don't have much on the agenda this weekend but one thing I am looking forward to- spending time with my friend Katie! She's coming over Saturday night for dinner! Sometimes we watch a movie but sometimes we just spend all our time chatting and that's wonderful too! If the weather cooperates (not likely) we might even have dinner on the deck! 

This weekend almost feels like it could be a four day weekend - courtesy of the Fourth coming up on Tuesday. My office is closed on Tuesday (of course) and on Monday we only have to work from 8:30-1:00...I work in wealth management and our schedule follows the stock market. So - yahoo for an "almost" four day weekend!

July Fourth - I'll be spending the Fourth at Nationals Park, taking in some of America's favorite pastime on America's birthday! My younger sister and I went last year and it rained...but was still an experience. This year my parents and I are going and the forecast shows hot and sunny - thank goodness our seats are in the shade! 

Faith Holland night celebration light fireworks GIF

We'll spend the evening of the Fourth at a local fireworks concert and show; likely with some friends, sharing picnic style goodies for our supper before watching the fireworks show! I may be getting ambitious...but I'm going to try to make...

American Flag Cake - Have y'all seen the video for this cake pop "style" American flag cake? I've made red velvet cake balls once before and while it was definitely a time suck, they turned out so tasty! I think I'm going to give this a whirl on Monday afternoon as my contribution to our Fourth of July feast! Wish me luck!

You Have to Laugh - This popped up on Twitter earlier this week and I wondered for a good day or two if it was real. Well, it was confirmed mid-week that this is an actual obituary for a Nationals loving gentleman who passed away in June. I told you - the bullpen is NOT great. *sigh*

Happy Weekend everyone - and if you're lucky - perhaps it's Happy LONG Weekend!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Watson Wednesday

Will every picture of Watson from now on involve the deck? I mean - as long as the weather is warm; I'd say that's fairly likely. I've never seen a creature be so happy to be in one spot as Watson is when he's on the deck. However; the back yard is getting a fence within the next month and that will probably elevate his happiness...so maybe from here on out all of his pictures will involve the deck or backyard?

Regardless - this week's pictures have a story with them. When the deck was being built, I noticed that if I sat in a certain position along the left side of the deck, I could see through the living room window and had a near perfect view of the television. I surmised that this would allow me to sit on the deck and still watch the Nationals game on the TV...and my Mom informed me that I was nuts.

Fast forward to last night when the Nationals were playing the Cubs and my silly pup wanted to go outside and sit on the deck at 9:15 at night. I let him out but he wasn't interested in sitting outside on the deck couch alone...he wanted me to sit with him. I opened the curtains back up, went outside and found the perfect spot on the couch for seeing the TV..and then we were set. He hopped up beside me, gazed at the stars, snapped at passing bugs and generally enjoyed the evening while I watched the Nationals beat the Cubs.

It was what one might call a win-win situation...for everyone involved. Including the Nationals! ;)

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

In the Game of Baseball...You Win or You Die...

The Iron Throne!
Okay..okay...that title is a little much. However, on Game of Thrones...long ago in the first season, Cersei Lannister tells Ned Stark "in the game of thrones, you win or you die..." and that only seemed fitting for a title. Ha-ha! Baseball isn't quite so drastic as all that - but on Friday night, a little bit of Westeros descended on Nationals Park for Game of Thrones Night.

Early in the season, the MLB announced that nineteen of the thirty-two teams that make up the MLB would be hosting Game of Thrones Night at their respective parks and I immediately looked to the bottom of the list of parks participating; the Nationals...being located in Washington, are always the last team listed. Sure enough - there they were! I mentioned it to one of my friends who is also a die-hard Game of Thrones fan, we purchased tickets and just waited for June 23rd to roll around!

The view from our seats - in the shade; great views & a nice breeze!
Game of Thrones Night - June 23, 2017
Danielle and I had a bit of a journey making our way to the ballpark; we arrived later than expected and our decision to forego carrying purses and instead cramming the vital things into wallet style cell phone cases was rewarded. The lines pouring out of the entrances stretched almost all the way down the street to the Metro station...but the no bag line; it was only about seven people deep! We were through the line and being handed our t-shirts in no time! We considered ourselves lucky - the t-shirts were already running low; the line I came through only had larges, so I grabbed mine and kept on going, ha-ha!
Very cool shirt - I'll wear it with pride!
The starting line up in their Game of Thrones best...

We found the line for the Iron Throne pretty quickly and thank goodness - when we hopped into the line; walking past a White Walker, Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen to get in place, the wait was just twenty-five minutes. We didn't realize how glad we'd be that the wait was only twenty-five minutes until about five minutes in... A saying that abounds on Game of Thrones is "Winter is Coming" but the room we were waiting in to take our picture with the Iron Throne...I don't know if Winter was ever coming there. 

Within the first five minutes of stepping in the line, I had sweat dripping down the sides of my forehead. I was sweating with the same intensity that an hour on the elliptical generates...and I was barely moving! As we got closer to the Iron Throne, the girl in line ahead of us whipped out her compact and started brushing up on her make-up and hair - but I was fairly certain after twenty minutes of sweltering heat...no amount of powder could fix my look. I just had to climb up on that throne, flash a grin and hope the picture(s) turned out alright...and then race for the exit and the breeze coming off the river!

It's hard to tell - but there's a dragon down there...it's wee though...
Brian Goodwin starting the comeback with his first of two home runs.
There was a White Walker in Section 108!
I've never been so glad to find my seats at the ballpark as I was on Friday night. After the time spent sweating in the "throne room", we made our way to the third level of seats, grabbed something to eat and grabbed our seats. We were in the shade and a breeze was coming off the river and so we began to cool down immediately! Once the game got underway - the first pitch was thrown out by the Mother of Dragons - it was actually really pleasant; a perfect night for baseball in the District! 

Musical cues and phrases from Game of Thrones were incorporated here and there throughout the game; when a Reds player struck out, the nun from season five could be heard intoning "shame..shame..shame.." which was hilarious! The hype videos were all clips from Game of Thrones interspersed with great plays and hits made throughout this season...with snow gently falling on each play; of course. After all...Winter is Coming. When Trea Turner stole second base, dragons soared across the screen and lit it up with fire; because...come on, when Trea runs...he's on fire! The President's Race even began with Teddy "holding the door"... is it too soon?
Hold the Door Teddy...
Sweaty but still having a blast!
The game started rocky for the Nationals - Stephen Strasburg (uncharacteristically) allowed four runs in the first inning alone and allowed the Reds to tack on another in third. However; the Red wouldn't score again for the entire game and the Nationals fought back via the long ball all night. Brian Goodwin hit a one run home run in the first, Anthony Rendon hit a one run home run in the fourth, Daniel Murphy hit a one run home run in the fifth and Stephen Drew hit a sac fly to make the game 5-4. Brian Goodwin tied the game up 5-5 with his second one run home run of the night in the seventh and the bullpen miraculously held the game at 5-5 through the ninth inning; Bryce Harper hit a single in the bottom of the tenth that allowed Trea Turner to race home and win the game, 6-5!

The game was great; I loved seeing my Nationals fight for the win till the very end (and then some) and of course; getting a chance to sit on the Iron Throne...even if only for a few seconds..well that was very cool indeed.

Monday, June 26, 2017

A Whole Lot of Nothing

Time is a strange thing; it's constant and yet, I feel like the weekend passed much faster because I did a whole lot of nothing, ha-ha! I suppose it's not exactly an accomplishment that I can admit that I managed to binge the entire fourth season of Game of Thrones over the weekend, right?

Let me not get ahead of myself - the week comes before the weekend - although I didn't particularly do very much during the week either. My early morning routine has changed a bit (exciting stuff here - I know) because I spend most of the hour that I allot for sipping my first cup of coffee now includes "chatting" with my little sister.

It should be noted; out of the nine pictures in this post, seven were taken on the deck. I think it's safe to say that the deck has quickly morphed into the best "room" of the house.

My little love relaxing on the rug.
Yes please - such beautiful colors. I'm like a kid when it comes to make-up!

The best way to spend a Wednesday morning - no doubt.
The work week was a bit slow - there is (happily) not a lot going on at the office right now and it's nice to take the lax weeks and enjoy them while they last. It does make the days creep along a little bit...but granted; it's nice to not be so busy that the day blazes by. A large(ish) chunk of my evenings are spent slaving away on the elliptical - something I've come to find I enjoy more than loathe. I guess being consistent with it now for 9+ weeks helps cement the habit and make it less annoying. Watching the weight on the scale drop each week certainly makes it less annoying too...

Making a pretty good case for lying on the deck all day long...

Thursday night skies...*sigh*

Game of Thrones Night @ Nationals Park
The weekend began wonderfully enough - Danielle and I made our way into DC for Game of Thrones night at Nationals Park. I'll elaborate more on the game in another post (so many pictures y'all) but the getting there and getting back was an adventure! We were in a race against time getting there after some snags at the office; we'd thankfully decided to go the no bag route & crammed everything into wallet-style phone cases. This worked brilliantly, we were able to jump in the no bag line, grab our giveaway shirts and jump in the line to take our picture with the Iron Throne - when we joined the line it was a 25 minute wait. I don't even want to know how long the wait was once we finished! Eek!

The return trip home was filled with overly crowded metro trains, time spent sitting on the tracks due to "single tracking" of the trains...at 10:30 at night, overly excited and sleepy children and finally...finally we made it back to the house! The game was wonderful, it was a great time...but I was so glad to see my bed at almost 1:00 AM!

Saturday - hiding from the rays of sunshine...

Sunset snooze on Saturday night.
The rest of the weekend was a bit of a bust...I was under the weather and so I did what anyone not feeling their best did: I binge watched the entirety of the fourth season of Game of Thrones, took more naps in the middle of the day than I have in months, and generally was just a complete bum. It seemed like every time I looked at the clock, I was shocked by how quickly time seemed to be passing - apparently time flies even if you aren't necessarily having fun!

Sunday sunshine.
So - another week and weekend come and gone. I don't know how your Monday is going, but so far mine has been just fine and the sky looks just as blue today as it did yesterday (see above picture). Here's hoping more gorgeous days and less lazy weekends are on the horizon!

Friday, June 23, 2017

Five on Friday

Weekend - Yes Please! It's time for Five on Friday!

Nationals Baseball - I'm starting this post with my beloved Nationals! This week was a bit of a bust for the Nationals; they only won one of the four games they played...*sigh*...but the Nationals still have a record of 43 - 29 and have a nine game lead in the National League East Division. Max Scherzer carried a no-hitter into the eighth inning on Wednesday and while the game didn't end in the Nationals favor; the skill and prowess of Max Scherzer is undeniable and I love getting to watch this guy (and the rest of the Nationals) play the game!

Game of Thrones Night @ Nationals Park - is tonight! My friend Danielle and I are headed into DC to enjoy baseball with a side of Game of Thrones goodness! The iron throne will be at the ballpark, so hopefully we'll get to take a quick snap on the spiky seat that keeps everyone in Westeros up in arms. And of course, there is an awesome t-shirt that is being given out to the first 20,000 fans through the gates...so here's hoping we make the cut! 

The Beauty & the Beast Collection from Lorac - I think I have made it pretty plain that I love anything and everything to do with Beauty & the Beast. I have been holding on to an Ulta gift card for months and when I discovered that Ulta had a collection from Lorac of Los Angeles that was themed around Beauty & the Beast - I knew what to use my gift card on! The collection has an eye shadow palette, a blush palette, a lipstick collection and a gloss collection; I didn't splurge and get every piece but I did snap up the eye shadow palette and the gloss collection.

I haven't tried out any of the shadows yet but the packaging is to die for - a beautiful gold "book" case with 16 shadows inside with names like "Beast Mode" (a navy blue), "Enchanting" (a soft gold) and "Spell Breaker" (a sparkly shadow) - I can't wait to try them out! The glosses go on smooth and don't leave your lips feeling sticky, which is a huge plus. So far my favorite it "savior faire", an almost nude color with just a hint of pink! I love it all!

Weekend Plans - My plans for the weekend don't extend past the baseball game tonight, ha-ha! And I absolutely have no problem with that! I am looking forward to sleeping in (if I can...) and maybe catching up on some movies that I've missed over the past few months? My sister tells me Passengers is good; so maybe I'll watch that? I like having nothing and no agenda...I can get up to anything and nothing, ha-ha!

What to Watch - Well, Fargo officially ended on Wednesday night and I am officially down to nothing to watch besides baseball! I am planning to check out the show Will when it comes on TNT in about a month and Game of Thrones seventh season begins on July 16th, but there is really nothing else on the horizon until September. Any suggestions?

And that's all I've got for this week - so until next time, I hope everyone has a good weekend!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

When You Wish Upon A Star....

...makes no difference how much moneys in your car... Wait. What? That doesn't seem right...

When you wish upon a star - your dreams come true! That sounds a bit better, ha-ha! If you are a long time blog reader, you'll know that at present my younger sister is currently on an all expense paid vacation to the sandbox...courtesy of the US military. A couple months before she left on her trip, we jokingly said that we'd love to go to Disney World once she returned...it was just an idea tossed around in jest. Until it wasn't!

As my sister and I have gotten older, we like to focus not so much on giving things as gifts...preferring instead to give experiences. Case in point - for Christmas in 2015, my family went to London. A trip I will never forget and precious memories that can never be taken from me; I wouldn't trade that for the world. After some discussion, we decided that this year for Christmas we'd just prefer to enjoy one another's company and to start the new year, we'd go to Disney World.

The trip - the experience - will be a gift that we can all share. Everyone will pay for meals (I've offered to fund our experience at Be Our Guest...only a few more weeks until we can book our reservation!) and we will have a week to spend together in the happiest place on Earth. I know we are all looking forward to it...my sister and I maybe a bit more than our parents...but then again, we've always been nuts about anything and everything related to Disney - so that shouldn't be much of a surprise.

I'll share bits and pieces of our travel plans as I count down the months (and eventually weeks and days) to our Disney vacation, but one thing I am looking forward to more than anything? Going to Florida in January as opposed to July or August - this may be the first time I go to Disney and don't melt!

In case you were wondering - the video above is where the reference to start the post was pulled from! Of course...of course, it involves the stars of Beauty and the Beast! What did you expect?

Monday, June 19, 2017

Of Dogs & Decks...

Monday - always so good to arrive right on time! A storm is rolling in; a storm that's been on it's way for days, so I figured pecking away at the key while the clouds roll in, the sky flashes and the thunder cracks is as good a way to pass the time as any.

Weekends are always much too short and I can't help but feel that way on this Monday too. The past work week was hectic, the weekend was lovely but passed much too quickly and now another week begins.
Heaven on Earth perhaps?
Tuesday afternoon relaxation with my favorite furball.
I do have to say that having an absolutely glorious deck to relax on has really made the weeknights that much more wonderful. There always seems to be a nice breeze coming from nearby mountains and so lying out on the deck with my sweet pup is a new favorite way to pass the evenings. It's also a plus that I can see the Nationals game on the television through the kitchen window, ha-ha! One must have their priorities in order - and if I can watch Ryan Zimmerman smash a baseball while enjoying a gentle breeze on the cozy outdoor couch - that's a lot of win in one sentence.

Marshmallow skies....
Spying on the neighbors - nosy little goose.
He's definitely a sun worshiper.
In his favorite place - because the entirety of the deck is his favorite place.
I suppose the title of the post is fairly self-explanatory. My dog absolutely despised the deck while it was being built; the sounds of construction absolutely terrified him to no end, but now that it's complete - well, it's the place that makes him happiest. He wants to sit on the deck early in the morning, throughout the afternoon and as the sun sets. The little fella moves from the rug to the couch to the umbrella stand and even creeps under the table from time to time - so long as he's on the deck, he really is content to sit most anywhere.

The weekend passed much too quickly - it seems like when there is nothing to do the weekend flies by...and when the calendar is full; well, the weekend still flies by! Friday night was lazy and lovely - I passed the time re-watching some Game of Thrones and of course; watching my Nationals play baseball.

I spent most of Saturday enjoying my sweet Momma's company - we went to get long overdue pedicures together, enjoyed some ice cream and stopped by a couple of our favorite shops - a wonderful way to spend an afternoon! I passed a lazy evening watching Nationals baseball, an episode or two of Game of Thrones and finishing the evening lying under the twinkling lights of the deck umbrella, watching a movie on my phone. It was pretty divine.

Saturday sunset as seen through the houses...
Sunday was a full and wonderful day - I joined my parents for church since it was Father's Day - I spent the majority of the service doing some long overdue baby snuggling. I spent almost every Sunday snuggling Evie's big sister Amelia; however I go to a different church now, so I have to make up for the lack of Evie's snuggles whenever I can! Once the church service was over, we had a delicious lunch at Carrabba's and then headed back to the house to change and pick up my pup!

Sweet smiles & snuggles!
We roamed around the countryside a bit - my Dad wanted to snap some pictures to mimic some postcards he has - and of course, Watson enjoyed every minute of riding in the car and exploring new and interesting places. I was interested in trying to get him to explore from the shade - it was a blazing 93 degrees on Sunday afternoon...but Watson is never interested in staying out of the sun! We stopped at Belle Grove Plantation and the Old Mill before heading back home to talk with my little sister and let my Dad open his gifts!

Red Barn + Blue Skies = pretty perfect
Gorgeous lilies, defying the summer swelter!
Belle Grove Plantation
A perfect picture made just a little more perfect - hi pup!
I closed the evening with some time spent on the elliptical, a quick supper on the back deck, a bubble bath and some reading in bed. Another week and weekend come and gone. Memories made and days spent - and another week to do it all over again.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Five on Friday

...It's Friday! It's always so exciting when Friday arrives; I'm sure we can all agree on that, right? The weekend is looming ever closer on the horizon and before I check out to enjoy my weekend, it's time for my Five on Friday!

As always I'm linking up with April at Smidge of This - if you're looking for another great blog to follow, check her out!

LipSense - Have y'all heard of LipSense? It's smear proof, smudge proof, run proof...lipstick! I've been curious about it for some time now but I wanted to give it a try before I purchased it; it's a bit pricey, but I've decided it is worth it! Two weeks ago I gave LipSense a test run and was thoroughly impressed! I applied LipSense at about 10:00 on Saturday morning at an Arts & Crafts Festival...it was very, very warm out...and the LipSense stayed on through a long, warm day perusing arts and crafts tents, guzzling bottles of water, eating Mexican food (chips and salsa), shopping at IKEA and y'all...when I prepared to go out that night...I still didn't need to reapply or update my color!

What's more - after lunch (and dinner) I wiped my mouth...as you do...and the color NEVER budged. I'm sold and my first color is coming my way soon! I can't wait! Oh yea - April...of Smidge of This; she sells LipSense! 

Disney Countdown - In case you were wondering...the Disney Vacation Spectacular of January 2018 is only 203 days away! One of the most important days of the vacation planning is rapidly approaching though; July 10th is the day to begin making reservations! Be Our Guest - here we come!

Watson - I know; Watson has his very own day on the blog, but he has fallen in love with the deck and spends so much time relaxing, lounging and worshiping the sun. I have snapped loads of pictures of him on the deck and so I had to share two of the many here. Because seriously - he's adorable! 

Weekend Plans - Believe it or not; I do not have a single weekend plan! I love having plans and I love having the weekend wide open in front of me and filled with possibilities. As always; I'm looking forward to my Saturday morning sipping my coffee and doing nothing - drinking coffee in the morning is probably one of my favorite parts of the day - every day - but especially on Saturday! I'm sure I'll find plenty to do and even if I don't..it's the weekend, what's not to love?

The Nationals - Well. *sigh* It has been a week to be a Nationals fan...and sadly, I don't mean that in a good way. It's been tossed around here and there and mentioned from time to time - but the sad truth is that the bullpen is a nightmare and this week that was painfully obvious! The five games played this week yielded two wins and three losses, so I suppose it could have been worse. The Nationals are in New York for the weekend to play a four game series against the New York Mets (ew) and the first game was a win for the Nationals, so here's hoping we are on the upswing! 

That's all I've got for this Friday - have a lovely weekend and show your Dad some love on Sunday!