Friday, October 17, 2014

Confessional Friday

Hi Girls-

Hope you all have had a fantastic week!  I think the weather is finally starting to turn to Fall in NC and I couldn't be more excited.  This weekend's weather is supposed to be even more amazing.  It's been such a busy week but I so look forward to this post.  So, let's get to confessin' with the lovely Leslie over at A Blonde Ambition.

1)  I confess that I actually broke out scarves, boots and even leg warmers (thank you Olivia Newton John) this week, even though the days I chose to wear them felt more like Summer--heavens to Betsy, I was sweatin' to the oldies in my gear.  BUT, I looked real cute in them anyhow.



 



2)  I confess that I have a date on Sunday and I couldn't be more excited.  More to come on this later.

3)  I confess that I have been on the grammar police patrol this week and I am highly annoyed with folks that can't differentiate between their/there and you're/your.

4)  I confess that I had my hair done last night and whoo, I feel so much better!



5)  I confess that a friend of mine's daughter, who is 17, borrowed a dress from me this week.  So, I'm looking at this two ways---1) That I have a fashion sense that is keen enough to draw a 17 year old to want to wear it or 2) That I am buying clothes that are way too young for me.  I've decided that I should probably just give her the dress now because she looked amazing in it.

6)  I confess that I bought my first pair of print palazzo pants this week--I still need to get someone to cut the bottoms off for me so I can walk but I have to admit, I am in love.


OK girls, your turn---what's your confession?



Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Willkommen in Deutschland! Part 3

Hi Girls-

I'm getting back to my European trip in July and finishing up my days in Germany.  Y'all, I had such an amazing trip and it's really fun to look back at these pictures and remember how awesome it was.  After a few work days in the office, that honestly didn't feel like working, because well, I was in an amazing country with views that are so amazing that it almost didn't seem real, we were able to do a group sight seeing trip.

Our office coordinator planned a walking tour in downtown Dusseldorf and dinner at a local German brewery--both of which were fabulous!  To be completely honest, I was so enamoured by the culture and spirit of the town that I didn't pay not one lick of attention to the tour guide  With that being said, although most of these pictures probably have some sort of significance, I really can't tell you anything about them, except that they are pretty :) 



 

This was our meal at the German brewery--like super authentic.  We had to order ahead of time so I honestly had no idea what "pork knuckle" actually was but when in Germany, eat as the Germans do.  So, that's what I did.  It was kind've like a big rib and apparently was the elbow of the pig.  The skin was hard, much harder than what I expected but too delectable not to eat.  Although I'm not a fan of sauerkraut, at all, I did have a taste because it was the polite thing to do.  This really was one of the best meals I had while traveling although I was so completely full that I never wanted to eat again after we left.


I think I had eluded in a previous post that during my European vacation, I drank more beer than I ever have before.  Case in point to the picture above.  My boss thought this was the best thing he's ever seen.  He's a big beer drinker--and the system that a lot of the breweries have in place is awesome.  You want more beer, keep your coaster off the drink--when you are done, put the coaster on it, much like those Brazilian steakhouses if you've ever been to one.

And to bring more beer into the mix, here's a chocolate mousse made with what else, beer!  It was awesome, although I was too full after my pork knuckle dinner to really enjoy it.


The streets are all so lovely.  I love this picture and the cobblestone roads.  I would love to go back.

Now, this is where it gets really exciting!  Did you girls know that the Haribo factory is in Germany?  Well, I didn't.  I had posted earlier that instead of chocolates on my pillow at night, my hotel put gummy bears on them which I thought was quite strange.  Until I told my European counterpart about it and he said, "well, you know, the Haribo place is right around the corner.  Do you want to go?"  Uh, yeah I do!!!!  As crazy as it sounds, this really was one of the highlights of my trip and all my favorite kids back home got snacks from there when I got home.


 



One of the art street vendors. 

This church was right next to my hotel.  And it rang for a long time (a very long time), at 6am and 6pm---every, single day!!!!

OK, girls, that's all I have for Germany.  Next up Amsterdam!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Randomness...

Hi Girls-

So to keep in line with last Monday's post about learning more about the author behind this crazy thing I like to call a blog I'm going to give you more random facts that make me, well me.

Let's get into it.

1)  What's a nickname you have?  I don't really have a nickname per se.  My God-given name is Jennifer but my closest family and friends and their kids call me Jenny.  I'm very picky about who calls me this and most of my friends have heart attacks when someone new comes into the group and starts calling me that right off the bat.  Most of my work peeps call me Jenn (which if I'm being honest, kind've drives me crazy).  The first company I ever worked for called me JMo (you know, kind've like JLo, Jennifer Lopez)---one of the other girls I worked with was JHo so you can see I got the better end of the deal. 

2) Weird habit?  I type out every single word I speak or think in my head.  Call it OCD if you will but it all stems back to 7th grade typing when we had to put a cardboard box over the keyboard so we would learn all the letters. 

3) Weird phobias?  I hate feet.  I hate touching feet.  I hate having people touch my feet.  I also hate the word "cuddle" and "booger". 

4) Song I love to blast when I am alone?  This is so easy--4 Non Blondes, "What's Going On?"  My absolute fave to sing out loud at the top of my lungs like I've got no cares in the world.

5) Nervous habit?  I chew on my lip or talk really fast and for those who know me are probably thinking, "do you not speak quickly in everyday life?"  Yes, that is true so can you imagine when I'm nervous.

6) Side of the bed you sleep on?  If you are facing it, I sleep on the right.  I have a King size bed and sleep on the very corner along with my 3 fur babies (Simone, Serena & Savannah).

7)  Drink you always order at Starbucks?  My two SB's go-to drinks are Pumpkin Spice Latte (non-fat, no whipped) or Green Tea lemonade (unsweetened).

8)  Weird body skills?  I think I am freakishly strong.  I've been known to move an entire china cabinet or dresser all by my lonesome because I'm too prideful to ask for help.

9)  Favorite comfort food?  Sweet-coconut cake (my momma used to make it but now my sister does--it's the best).  Savory-Chicken & Dumplings.

10) What do you wear to sleep in?  PJ pants & a tank top.  I hear that sleeping in the nude is good for you because it helps keep your pores open---however, I never sleep in the nude for fear of a fire or break-in occurring during said time of being nude and in a compromising position. 

11) What did you used to wear that you thought was really cool but that you realize now really wasn't?  Jams--if you are a child of the 80's you know what I'm talking about and you probably had a pair.

OK, it's your turn.  I hope y'all enjoy reading stuff like this as much as I do.


Monday, October 13, 2014

Nothing Says Love Like A Colostomy Bag...

 
Hi Girls-
 
Catchy title, eh?  Well, nothing like the truth on a Monday morning.  This is the 2nd part of my dating post that I gave a little teaser to in my Confessional post on Friday.  And girls, if anything, this should give you a great chuckle for the rest of the week. 
 
In order to provide anonymity and protection for the nutso guys that are participating in online dating, I have not provided their real names or complete pictures of their photos although I really feel it is my duty to make sure any other single gal doesn't get mixed up with these fellas.  I've done online dating for several years now--obviously the fact that I'm still single shows you that I definitely have not met the love of my life on any of the sites that I've been on which included match.com, eHarmony & Christian Mingle.  My latest adventure was on Christian Mingle and to be perfectly honest, I have found that regardless of the site, the men are all the same on it--it really doesn't matter if there is a religious affiliation at all. 
 
So let's get into it.  I only actually met one guy but talked to half a dozen or more before deciding that I really wasn't interested actually seeing them in person. 
 
Guy #1:  The guy I actually went out with actually seemed to be someone that I could see myself being with---he was established, my age, had two children and lived about 10 minutes away from me.  He was not my type at all, shorter than someone I would normally go out with but we really hit it off on our first date which lasted about 4 hours and ended with a few good night kisses when he walked me to my car.  We talked and texted everyday for about two weeks as I was traveling for work and he was on vacation so our next actual date didn't take place right away.  Regardless, during our conversations, we talked about love in general, religion, our church (to which he actually invited me to go with him), etc.  Everything seemed to be heading in the right direction.  Well, on our second date, I actually allowed him to come to my home to pick me up--safety first girls and I felt comfortable enough to allow him to collect me from my home since we had talked for as long as we had.  Anywhoodle, after dinner and drinks, we came back to my house to hang out and watch a movie.  Movie turned into a Rated PG make out sesh but it was getting late and it was a work night so I asked to reconvene our date on another night.  His reply, "what, are we not going to have sex?"  Uhmmm--let me think about it, no!  I told him that I didn't have sex on a second date and while I don't consider myself to have many strict rules in dating, that is one of them.  His reply to this was, "well, technically, it's after midnight so it is another date so it's ok."  Seriously?  First of all, I didn't establish if sex was even allowed on a 3rd date, which BTW it isn't, but how presumptuous for him to think that it was a given.  Long story short, we never spoke again. 
 
Guy #2: Guy #2 came right on the tail end of Guy #1.  Right off the bat, he was uber complimentary which made made uber uncomfortable.  Saying things like "the mirror must cry every time you leave the house because you are stunning" and "what do you sell because if you sell sweet beautiful kind loving hearts, you must be a millionaire" and "the eyes are the way to a person's heart and yours are breath taking".  Girls, I can't make this stuff up!  Oh and this apparently is called "love bombing" which I had never heard of before.  But after I told him to bring it down a notch he did.  He seemed like a good guy--very humble, down to Earth, super simple.  Again, very much unlike someone I would be normally attracted to.  He also had a child but gave me too much insight into a messy divorce (really guys, sometimes less is more).  The first week we started talking, he had his daughter so we weren't able to meet up right away.  I was traveling for my job the second week so we made plans to get together that weekend.  We talked and texted all week leading up to our date.  Well, that Saturday, I sent him a text asking what time we would be meeting up as I knew he was working that day.  He responding saying that he wasn't sure he was actually going to be able to go out but would let me know by noon that day.  Noon came, 1 came, 2 came and finally at 3 he sent me a message saying that he was sorry but that he was going to have to work later than he had planned and wouldn't be able to meet.  Although I was frustrated, I said "ok, fine, no biggie".  I had thought he would have responded to set up another date but nothing--never heard from him again.  Hmm...
 
Guy #3: This is interesting and has actually had a turn of events since I initially talked to him over 3 weeks ago.  Stay tuned for Bachelor #3--some riveting new details have emerged and I'm not ready to share them just yet in an effort not to jinx myself, lol. 
 
So, that's my adventure in dating over the last couple of months.  But to leave y'all with something funny, below are some of the men that didn't make the cut that reached out to me--I'm sure y'all will understand why.   
  
You have to click on this picture to be able to read what this man's introduction to himself says.  Now ladies, I am all about honesty and being open.  I've met men before that don't look anything like their photos and also some that downright lied about what they put in their profile but this guy gives need meaning to "what you see is what you get".
 
OK, this is just a few of the pics that I decided to show you ladies.  If you are single and on any dating sites, you know what I mean.  If you are married or with someone, consider yourself lucky that you don't have to go through any of this.  Here's my caption for each of these photos going from top to bottom, left to right.  Picture #1, note to self--if you are on a dating site, please post a picture that doesn't show you with a wedding ring on your finger.  Picture #2 & #3 go together--this man's profile says he rarely drinks but the first photo he has is one with a beer.  Now, let me say that I do love wine and beer but that's also why I say I'm an occasional drinker in my profile. Picture #4--not sure you can tell it but this "easy going" gentleman's photo is one in which has chewing tobacco bulging from his bottom lip.  Come on now!!!!  Picture #5--I love a sharp dressed man but this is very reminiscent of Jim Carey's character in "The Mask".  Picture #7 and #8 is only profile names---now I'm not super picky (ok, that's a lie) but any guy's profile that has the word "killer" in it is obviously not for me and although I respect a man who is widowed getting back out in the dating world, perhaps "HandomeWidow" should not be your profile name. 

Hope you enjoyed this post ladies!  This was really fun to write!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Dating Schmating! The Secret Life of a Single Gal Trying to find Love...

Hi Girls-

Happy Saturday y'all!  As promised in my confessional yesterday, this is part 1 of my life as a single gal.  This is a topic that is near and dear to my heart.  I know all too much about it and I do it more often than I want to.  It's dating and if you are single and in your 30's, you probably know all about it too.  I hate dating but I hate online dating even more.  I feel like I've been on every appropriate dating site that a 36 year old could subscribe to over the last several years---eHarmony, Match.com, Christian Mingle, heck I even looked at Farmersonly.com which BTW, I didn't join.  The fact of the matter is that it's hard to be a single, never been married, 30 something, independent gal BUT it's even harder for said single gal to date. 

Online dating doesn't have the stigma anywhere near what it did years ago when I first looking into it.  Honestly, you can't meet many single folks who haven't tried it.  And everybody knows somebody who met someone and fell in love and had 4 babies with someone they met online---blah blah blah!  Do you feel my disdain for those people?  Yeah, it's there y'all and it's real!!!!   It's so hard to meet someone organically anymore.  For me, this is even tougher because I work from home so I am not in a normal office environment where I'd be around people that would say, "Oh, I have the perfect person to introduce you too."  Outside of that, I have done things like going to a new church, looking into (although I haven't done any of them yet) new hobbies and places to go.  All of my friends are married---like every single one of them so I literally am the only single gal in my group. 

Now let me back up just a bit--I'm going to delve into my emotional state of mind in dealing with being single.  Even though this is a very vulnerable place for me, I know I'm not the only one who feels this way.  I know I can't be the only single 36 year old gal that exists in the world--even though I sometimes feel like it.  I hate being single.  I hate being alone every night with just my fur-babies and my thoughts.  I have an overwhelming fear of being by myself for the rest of my life--never meeting the one, never getting married, never finding someone to love me or take care of me when I'm old and gray.  I fear not having someone to hold my hand when I'm sick, or sad or happy or just wanting someone to hold my hand.  I fear not ever getting those butterflies in my tummy again when I'm so excited about being with that special guy even if I've been with them a million times before.  I fear that I'll never have someone tell me that they love me and why they love me and how they could never live without me.  I fear that I'll always be that person that when out in a group and the waitress is divvying up the checks, I'm the only one that says, "by myself or on my own".  These are my thoughts--raw and real. 

I've loved before---once when I was younger and thought I knew what love was, once when I was a bit older and just wanted to get married because all of my friends were and once when I was older that made me lose all sense of self and hardened me to the point of not being sure if I ever wanted to love again.  It's tough!  It's scary!  Sometimes I grieve for my loss of love.  Sometimes the grief is paralyzing--so much so that I just want to give up on it altogether and just say "screw it".  Sometimes I try to convince myself saying that some people just aren't meant to be part of a couple and maybe that "some people" is me. 

OK, so this post got a little more serious than I had planned.  I had originally wanted to write about the last few guys that I dated from Christian Mingle, which by the way my subscription ran out last week and I didn't renew it.  With that being said, I am going to come back on the completely nutso guys who should never have gotten past the preliminary stages of my profile details but nonetheless they did.  But because I've rattled on about my "feelings" for so long, I'm going to save their crazy shenanigans for another post so come back on Monday girls, especially if you've been in my shoes before.  I'm sure we can compare some great stories :)

Friday, October 10, 2014

Confessional Friday


Hi Girls-

What a week!  I am actually writing this on Thursday night while sitting in a hotel room in Denver, CO.  I flew here from Memphis earlier today and will be in this beautiful city until Saturday morning for work (even though the forecast is calling for rainy, cold weather).  I've been so excited to get so many posts up on my blog this past week and it really feels good to get back in the blogging groove.  Please stay tuned because I've got so many good posts coming up!

Well, let's get down to what you are here for---drum roll please!!!!!  It's time to link up with the lovely Leslie again over at A Blonde Ambition.  If you are a blogger and just stumbled upon my crazy post, I highly encourage you to take a look at not only her blog but all the women that link up to her Confessional Friday's--there are so many talented and funny ladies out there.

1)  I confess that my Christian Mingle subscription finally expired on Tuesday.  Honestly, I think I had a major sigh of relief when I knew it was done.  I've gone on a number of dates over the last 3 months, obviously none that resulted in anything wonderful as I am still single.  However, I have a fabulous 2 part post coming up tomorrow and on Monday about my adventures in online dating--believe me you don't want to miss it.  It will be awesome because y'all know it has to be a good story if it involves no sex on a second date, a colostomy bag, a wedding ring, a beer bottle and love-bombing (which apparently is an actual word).  Seriously, I can't make this stuff up!

2)  I confess that I stayed in my pajamas for the majority of the day Monday-Wednesday this week.  I had made a goal for myself to get up and get dressed a few weeks back but I just couldn't get it together this week. I'll blame it on this beautiful Fall weather.

3)  I confess that I ate Cool Ranch Doritos and Doc McStuffin gummies for dinner on Monday night--yep, not exactly what is on my approved dietary list.

4)  I confess that I found out this week that one of the girls in my Bible Study class is the girlfriend of the brother to one of the girls that was part of the couples on "Married at First Sight" which I absolutely loved. I am a terrible reality TV junkie.  If you are unfamiliar with what I am talking about, it was on this past Summer and featured couples that literally met on their wedding day and had 6 weeks to decide whether they would stay together or not.  This particular couple ended up staying together and actually had a wedding shower hosted in NC (her hometown state).  With that being said, I have decided to make her my new best friend because I am oh so curious about how all that went down and getting a little "Inside Edition" scoop.

5)  I confess that while I ate a horrible dinner on Monday, I had full intentions of cooking a wonderful healthy meal on Tuesday but instead drank a bottle of wine.  In my mind, wine=grapes, grapes=fruit, fruit=healthy.  OK, I know, not altogether true but well, this is my confession.  I must get back on my routine. 

Alright girls, that's all I have for the day.  I hope you all had a great week and that the weather in your area is perfect for a fantastic weekend!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Thankful Thursday

Hi Girls-

Quick post today!  What are you thankful for?

1)  I'm thankful for a job that I really do love.  Back at the beginning of the year, when I found myself without a job for four months, I spent a lot of time soul searching.  I feel so incredibly blessed that I fell into a position that really seems to be a great fit.

2)  I'm thankful for a roof over my head, food in my fridge, being healthy and having loving friends and family.  This should be a given but far too many days go by where I don't give thanks for the things that I should be thankful for everyday.  I'm not wealthy by any means but I have so much more than so many others that don't complain about mundane things that I often find myself complaining about.

3)  I'm thankful for my sister.  I've written about her on my blog many times before--all of the sacrificing she's ever done for me and all the things she gave up in order to get me through certain points in my life make her one of the most unselfish people I have ever known in my entire life.

4)  I'm thankful for knowing a forgiving God who loves me unconditionally.  This is a tough one.  I've strayed---many times.  It's a daily battle but I know that I serve an all powerful, loving Lord who constantly has his arms wrapped around me. 

5)  I'm thankful for memories and pictures of my momma and daddy.  I lost them both in 1996 and my life has never been the same.  But even throughout the sadness of not having them in my life now, I am so fortunate that I had nearly 18 years with both of them. 

OK girls, that's all I have for today.  I think it's really important to sit back and really think about how fortunate we are and I'm so glad I was able to share it with y'all.

Come back tomorrow for the link up with the lovely Leslie over at A Blonde Ambition.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

Hi Girls-

You made it to Wednesday--the middle of the week!  And I hope you are all doing fantastically well!Today is my "Wordless Wednesday" and although I'm telling you that (which technically means it is not wordless), this is how the past weekend went for me.  These are not my children but I love them like they are and we had a super fun weekend making S'mores, going to the pumpkin patch and my most favorite part---snuggling!






 




Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Willkommen in Deutschland! Part 2

Hi Girls-

Willkommen zurück!  (or Welcome back!)  OK, when we last left off, I had made the long trek over that beautiful pond of ours, conquered 4 trains, a cab ride and checked into my beautiful non-air-conditioned room in Solingen, Germany.  It was now for work to start and I was way off on my sleep due to jet lag and the time differences (6 hours ahead).  But I was a trooper--I couldn't have felt more fortunate that I was in another country and was fully prepared to take advantage of every minute I could of it--sleep deprived or not!  Our office was right around the block from the hotel and was beautiful.  I absolutely adore how everything appears to be so simple.  Although I was working, it certainly didn't feel like it.


My office--our global headquarter.  The bottom corner photo is from the office we worked in all week--also with no air conditioning so all the windows were open. 
 
Everything is in glass bottles--and I realized how much I really disliked sparkling water.  I'm a still water girl all the way!
And this was lunch our first day--honestly, I have no idea what most of it was except for the salami and turkey.  It was still all very good!
 

 
Our first night out was at a Spanish restaurant.  I forgot to pull out my phone early enough to take a full picture of the appetizer plate but it was sardines (both pickled and fried), cheese, prosciutto, calamari, capers and olives.  I didn't take a photo of my meal but I shared the paella.  



 
 And this was the after party--honestly, I drank more beer in the course of my 7 days in Europe than I think I have in my entire adult life.  It was fabulous!  This was the first pub we went to that was right around the corner from our hotel.  The shot was some cherry liquor that tasted much like Nyquil. 


And yes, that's an Aldi's.  I was in love!!!  The Aldi's there are like the ones here except they are twice as big and they sell beer and hard liquor.
 
 
 The entire German/US Sales team and our other gifts from them.  We did a hat exchange and I must say, I looked much better than the rest of the guys from the US.  They definitely looked like they should have been auditioning for extras in The Sound of Music. 

 These were taken on the night of our 50th Anniversary party.  We had dinner at a beautiful "castle" that looked like many of the houses that I've seen celebrities live in in the Hamptons.  It was really special to be a part of the event though as the first customers that originally bought product from the founder of Unger spoke--albeit in German so I had absolutely no clue what they were saying but most of the crowd was laughing so I imagine it was pretty comical.

We are getting there girls--up next my trip to Amsterdam!