Monthly Archives: August 2011

Bridal Showers, Fab-o Jobs, and Friends….

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It’s been awhile since I’ve written and I apologize…. I’ve become a bad little blogger.  But we’re back!

So last week was my first week at Homeward Bound and I am so happy to be working there.  The people are beyond nice and I’m excited about this job and all that it entails.  I think it’s going to be a great fit 🙂  I’ve even been invited to a bridal shower today for one of the girls on the team!  So excited to be making friends and feeling social again.

In other news, an old friend from Make-A-Wish was in town for a conference this week and I was able to meet up with her for the first time in a year!  It was so much fun hearing about her upcoming wedding plans and all that I’ve missed in Boston this past year.  I’m hoping more friends and family get out here to visit soon!

Now, for my Southwest suggestions for the day:

1) The Tempe Marketplace– Chris and I hopped over here last weekend for some window shopping, lunch and a movie.  It has everything you could ask for in an outdoor mall and all the outdoor misters keep you cool, even when it’s 110.

2) The Jade Bar at the Sanctuary on Camelback– Now, this place looks awesome.  Apparently it’s a little upscale, but the views are unbelievable.  I don’t know that we’d ever have dinner at this place (Elements, the restaurant attached), but a beer overlooking the valley would be doable!

That’s all I’ve got for today!  As we get out and about and experience the city more, I’ll continue posting my suggestions!

Stay cool 🙂

XO!

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I Wish It Snowed In Summer….

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…well, not really, but I wouldn’t mind so much with the 110 degree weather!

And on that note, CHECK OUT THIS EVENT HAPPENING IN SCOTTSDALE IN TWO WEEKS.  A block party with 10,000 lbs of SNOW to benefit Make-A-Wish!!!! This makes me incredibly happy 🙂  I’m thinking we’ll have to go.

In other news there was an insane dust storm here yesterday…I wasn’t driving but Chris was coming home from work.  YIKES!  Interesting new weather to deal with in this part of the country.

The new job starts Monday and I have to say, I am SOOOO ready.  I have felt so lazy this past week, trying not to drive a bunch and waste gas before I get a paycheck.  I’ve done a lot of baking (because apparently I bake when I’m bored now) and CLEARLY have spent far too much time online.  And aside from that, there has been way too much tv.  AHHH well… I will be longing for this type of a week in a few months, I’m sure.

Ok, back to the point of the blog (I ramble, I know)… Something I think everyone that comes here should check out is the ASU Gammage.  It is a gorgeous theater on ASU’s campus in Tempe and features a wide variety of performances- dance, music, Broadway, etc… Check it out!

I am dying to go to White Christmas, Stomp, and Wicked when they are here. I will report in and let you know how they are!

Ok, off to the gym… trying to stay active since living here is like being smack in the middle of Beverly Hills.  Trying not to gain a complex already 😉

Lots of love from the Scorchin’ Southwest! XO

Pizza and Mountains and Jobs, Oh My!

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Beware: Personal Plug!

The new organization I’ll be working for is called Homeward Bound and I would love for all of you check out the website!  It is about to undergo some changes and since I’ll be working as their Communications Coordinator (Social Media, PR, etc.) you can expect to hear more from me re: events, updates, etc.  There will most likely be a new blog specific to HB once I get started, so get ready!  Also, check out my new Twitter account.  Again, this is a personal account just to test the waters; there will probably be an HB account in the near future.

OK, that’s all I’m plugging for the moment, I promise!

Back to Scottsdale/Phoenix living… 🙂

Chris and I tried a new restaurant the other night called Sauce.  They are currently having a summer special where you can get a pizza, salad, and two glasses of wine for $20!  Great food, great prices, great ambiance.  Try it out!  

Are you salivating yet?? I am.  And it’s only 10 am my time.  Bummer.

Another interesting site I’d like to suggest to people new in town is Meetup. I learned about this in Boston and signed up for the site in Indiana, but never took advantage of all the great groups and activities available.  I am definitely looking to get involved here in Scottsdale, though.  And apparently volleyball is the craze here!  Anyway, you can find meetup groups anywhere in the country so no matter where you are, near or far, check it out.

Also, look out these pics… I cannot WAIT to hike Camelback Mountain.  How gorgeous are the rocks and the view??

Sigh…. mountains are incredible, I have to say.  Who knew a desert could be this beautiful?

To a productive and inspiring Wednesday!

Lots of Southwest Love. XO!

Greenbelts and New Jobs!

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One thing I have noticed in my life is that when I am exercising regularly, I am a happier, nicer person.  Chris could not agree with this more.  Poor thing met me when I was training for a half-marathon and high with endorphins… and then had me move in with him, gain ten pounds, and stop running.  Oy, what a difference THAT made.  BUT, I am back on the wagon and loving the gym right at our complex.  It’s nothing fancy but when it’s 110 degrees outside, AC while running is glorious.

What I am really looking forward to, however, is for the weather to chill out a little (literally) so that I can run or bike on the fabulous Greenbelt, right outside our apartment.  See below for pictures of both the trail (which keeps you away from busy traffic and gives you a rare glimpse of green in the desert) and the dream beach cruiser bike that I drool over:

Pop a basket on the front of that baby and you’ll never see me in a car again!

In other news, I am GAINFULLY EMPLOYED as of this morning!!!! Praise the lord!  I have never had 6 weeks off between jobs and I was about to have a panic attack.  You know it’s bad when even purchasing gum is out of the question because it is “wasting money.”  But I start a real, full-time job with benefits at a place whose mission is dear to my heart on Monday morning.  Could I be more excited?  Doubtful!  We’ll have to celebrate once Chris gets home from his first day of work.  Woo hoo, hooray for two incomes after NONE! 🙂

And last, but CERTAINLY not least, happy birthday, Mom!!!!!  I have the greatest Mom on the planet. XO!

Southwest Sunshine and Lots of Love!

 

 

 

Cookies, Wine, and a Cozy New Couch :)

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I used to be the type of girl that couldn’t sit still and hated down time.  Not that I am any better at sitting still now, but I am learning to value free time a bit more, especially after a year of school and multiple part time jobs.  Plus, having 6 weeks of no working to spend time with Chris has been absolutely awesome (not sure if he feels the same way, but I have loved it haha).

With hopeful employment in the near future, I have taken what I assume to be my last week of “down time” in stride and focus on trying some things I keep meaning to do.  As I browsed my new favorite site Pinterest today, I realized I am constantly repinning delicious baked goods and meals I am dying to try (as well as fun crafts, outfits, etc.) and then shutting my computer down and promising myself to try things in the future.  Well, why not now?  Chris is studying and instead of rotting my brain with reality TV, I could get a little creative 🙂

So, I decided to try my hand at oreo stuffed chocolate chip cookies… you heard me, folks.  Here’s a little photo journey of the project I undertook in my cute new kitchen:

 

They were absolutely delicious!!!  I strongly suggest following the link I pasted in above and making them for yourself.  They are quick, easy, and sure to please.

When moving to a new place, staying busy and keeping active is the key to settling in.  Friends are not instantaneous and that feeling of “home” takes awhile to come by.  But the more fun and activity you insert into your days, the more you will feel like YOU.   Trust me on this… I learned that far too late into the game in Indiana.

NOW- for your Southwestern tip of the day, I suggest a trip to 5th and Wine.  It is a cozy, trendy wine bar with indoor and outdoor seating, complete with comfy couches and bookshelves for solo trips.   Chris and I ventured over last night for a much needed “let’s get out of the house” endeavor.  The Astica (a Malbec from the Mendoza region) was pleasing to the palate and the ambiance was quite relaxing.  The food is also incredible!

A quick note about what we realized when downtown last night: people in Arizona are VERY well-dressed and beautiful.  As we marched around town in our comfy summer garb, we noticed that everyone around us was dressed to kill and on a mission for good times and possibly “love.”  I mentioned to Chris that I felt no need to dress up.  After all, I met him sans makeup, ponytail in hair…why go out of my way to be uncomfortable with sore feet to impress?  I have what I need 🙂  Though, I do not fault people for having fun gussying up… and I like to get decked out every once in awhile when I’m hanging with the girls!  Whatever makes you happy ❤

Lots of Southwestern love on a sunny Saturday!  XO

Indy Yesterday, Scottsdale Today!

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My title tells a bit of a lie.  Indy was not yesterday, it was about a month ago.  But we ARE in Scottsdale today!  After a week of packing and loading the pod, a three-day drive through Illinois, Missouri, Texas, New Mexico and Arizona, a 12-day jaunt to Maine, and another week of unpacking, we are finally settling into this new, exciting life.

To those of you new to my random, babbling blog style, let me explain a few things.  One, I rarely stay on topic.  I will start this blog with the grandiose notion that I will be providing the world with top-of-the line tips and reviews about life in the Southwest.  I will gradually stray to other topics, like what I ate for breakfast, random happenings that make me chuckle, and the oh so cringeworthy (and hopefully rare) rant.  I apologize in advance for my easily distracted brain.

A few things about Arizona since Chris and I are new here, have no friends yet, and are still waiting on our first paychecks… therefore have little to report just yet.  First, it is very, very hot.  We’re talking 110 degrees everyday.  It was a bit shell-shocking at first, but we’re getting used to it.  Second, the food here is AMAZING.  Every restaurant we have tried has been mind -blowingly good.  For healthy, fresh, and delicious options (at a very reasonable, unemployed rate),  I highly recommend Wildflower Bread Company. Third, having a pool is essential and fabulous.  We are enjoying the night swims at the apartment complex, that’s for sure.  Fourth, the desert and mountains provide for an incredible landscape.  Though a beach girl at heart, there is something horribly romantic about a jagged landscape of red mountains and cacti… especially when they are silouetted by the setting sun and rising moon at dusk.  Fifth, using a service like pods to move (see link above) is key to your happiness.  Trust me on this one.  Sixth, people here are incredibly friendly and laid back.  Sometimes too laid back for our little midwestern, northeastern minds that are constantly on the verge of needing a valium (I am going to admit here that I am the easily stressed one in this relationship).   We will learn the way and probably live longer because of it.  Seventh, I love how much cheaper gas is here.

For anyone out there moving to the Southwest (particularly Arizona), you are in for a treat!  I would recommend Cox Communications for your internet and cable bundle.  I would also recommend situating yourself close to Old Town Scottsdale since it’s hoppin'(I’m convinced Ice and Coco hang out here).  It may be different from anything you’ve experienced, but pour yourself some wine, crank that AC, and marvel at the weeks upon weeks of sun.  Life is good.