April-May-June Update

Editor’s Note: When I sat down to write my update, I thought “You literally have nothing to write about.” I’m pleasantly surprised at what I’ve done the past three months! I should have made one of my goals be “blog regularly” because that clearly ain’t happening. Sorry folks. Okay, here we gooooo

#1 – Take a calligraphy class. 

I LOVED IT. I signed up through Kirkwood and the class met in May – twice a week for an hour for three weeks, so six sessions total. It was 1) really relaxing 2) very interesting.  The first thing the instructor said the thing about calligraphy that makes it exciting is the different weights of the ink/pen when writing. I really had to remind myself to slooooow down to get the good lookin’ stuff. We were taught with ink and nibs (I think I was expecting calligraphy brush pens) but not feather quills or anything. I know I’m an old lady at heart, but not THAT old. After the class wrapped up, I sent a couple of cards to friends to practice PLUS I ordered calligraphy pens (Sharpie brand). I haven’t had a chance to test ‘em out yet but looking forward to getting started on ‘em.  I started a calligraphy board on Pinterest and started following some calligrapher accounts on Instagram, so I’m practically the real thing. I really enjoyed the calligraphy class and will likely re-take the class again when offered this fall to get more practice.

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Valeda, Verle, Opal, and Robert – my grandparents’ names.

#2 – Run the Bix 7.

Training continues. Slowly. I run like the winded. As of this post – the Bix is 1 month away!

#3 – Cook a new meal once a week.

HAAAAAAAA no, moving on.

#4 – Bake cupcakes/dessert once a month.

Long story short, I attempted baking last night for some high school students. It’s summer and I’m all about doz s’mores so I attempted this S’mores Bites recipe.

First rant: I HATE BAKING BLOGS. Stop writing about how you love things and taking photos of food at weird angles. I just want to know the ingredients and the steps to deliciousness, ain’t got time for fancy photos and “oh lovelies, it was just maaaarvelous and reminds me of my family member and she’s the best and let me tell you more stories about her.” I recognize the irony that this blog post is already going on forever.

There were like 6 ingredients, I figured I GOT THIS. Turns out, you should never mix up the words jumbo and mini.  I needed mini muffin tins and jumbo marshmallows and in my baditude of baking, I settled for jumbo muffin tins and mini marshmallows.  The recipe was supposed to make 2 dozen-24. With some rationing of the crust, I ended up with 19 between the 2 muffin tins. Whoops.

After the initial baking, I couldn’t figure out why one tin of crusts cooked and held together so much better than the second.  The bites came out decently well from the first tin, but not the second… As I did the dishes, I realized the second pan actually was TWO pans stacked together. Sooooo the crust couldn’t cook through as well. The high school students were good about it, one just took a spoon and ate out directly from the muffin tin. Thank Gawd I had back-up treats … I had extra graham crackers, so I made graham cracker/frosting sammiches.

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PINTEREST FAIL.

#5 – Binge a show on Netflix as fast as I can.

So I re-started my favorite show of all time – How I Met Your Mother. I’m slow – my idea of binging is 2-3 episodes a night, but I’m usually in bed by 9:30pm (#oldlady) soooo it’s a short night. I want to finish the season of HIMYM I’m on and then fully binge Season 4 of OITNB and then head back to HIMYM.

#6 – Travel more.

Just call me a world traveler. Maybe scale it back a coast to coast traveler.

In May, I spent Memorial Day weekend in Boston, MA. I visited my friend and fellow pop-culture nerd Laura who is the most bad-ass librarian and friend you’ll ever meet. Laura planned a great weekend –  we went to a Sia concert, walked the Freedom Trail, did the Sam Adams Brewery Tour, tried our hand at Candlepin Bowling, and so much more.

June has been crazy! I spent one weekend in exotic Clear Lake, IA with my roomies and their kiddos. We have met in Clear Lake before, but never in the summer… the lake has always been iced over. We were able to visit the beach and visit a lake-front restaurant. It was great to be together and to see new parts of Clear Lake.

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The next weekend, my bestie and I went to GALena – it was the first time for both of us. We spent some time exploring their Main Street shops, took in a trolley tour, wine tasting, and found some alpacas to hang out with (seriously).

A friend of wine is a friend of mine.

A friend of wine is a friend of mine.

Alpaca selfie.

Alpaca selfie.

And just last week, I went the opposite direction and spent a 3.5 days in Seattle on our family vacation (#GoerdtsGoWest). It was the perfect amount of time in Seattle to do the tourist-y highlights, like the Space Needle, aquarium, whale watching, two museums, and of course the Pike Place Market. The hardest part about Seattle was what to pack. You don’t tell an overpacker/analyzer to bring layers and only a carry-on.

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It is very possible we color coordinated our outfits.

#7 – Read a new book once a month.

For my first book club book, we read “Some Luck” by Jane Smiley. Not my favorite but the setting was in Iowa, so I appreciated the mentions of local Iowa towns. Plus there was a chapter about the Iowa State Fair – one of my favorite summer activities!

On my flights to/from Seattle, I read our new book “Defending Jacob” by William Landay. A totally different book from “Some Luck” and much more my kind of read. A prosecutor’s son, Jacob, is accused of murdering his classmate.

#16 – Fitbit personal challenges each month

It was my goal to hit 190 miles in April. I didn’t hit it, I was about 12 miles off. I tried again in May, this time I was 10 short, and I’ll give you a guess to June. I’m going to keep trying for 190. In other news, I still LOVE my Fitbit. I wanted the Flex because I liked that I could change out the bands to match my outfits. Soooo now I have about 20 bands. I’m not sure if you’ve heard of amazon.com, but you can essentially order anything from there, including cheetah print, polka dot, or chevron pattern Fitbit bands. Not even slightly ashamed.

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The top row is my watch bands. Bottom row is my Fitbit bands, which is now not up-to-date because I just got a new one tonight.

#19 – Go to a museum and be cultured for a day.

So, as a Goerdt, you are not a museum person. Get in, get the picture, and get out. I do feel like I got a decent amount of culture in both my trips to Boston and Seattle. The Boston Public Library included a couple of exhibits as well as we visited the Isabella Gardner Museum, full of paintings, sculptures, and super fancy stuff.  In Seattle, we visited the EMP (Experience Music Project) Museum and I LOVED IT. It was a essentially a pop-culture nerd’s dream and I was in heaven. Highly recommend it.

#20 – Write more.

I’m trying to be better about writing things down, including daily activities and thoughts and feelings. 68922489 years from now, someone will find these scribbles and Word Docs and make the shortest screenplay ever. We’ll keep “Quarter Life Crisis” as the working title.

#21 – Ride my bike more this summer.

BOOM, it’s happened once… so far. I visited my bestie who lives in the Des Moines area and we spent the morning riding the High Trestle Trail, which I’m not going to explain because you’ve likely seen a picture of it.

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Besties biking bridges.

#25 – **SECRET**

Check this one off! It happened shortly after my last blog post.

Wrapping up

Sorry for the long post, this is what happens when you wait three months. Let’s see – other things – I’ve been listening to a healthy mix of Fifth Harmony, Sia, Adele, and Meghan Trainor as of late. A lot of girl power, confidence, and motivation from these women. AND THIS KICK-ASS SONG CALLED “GOOD AS HELL” BY LIZZO.

Have a great July 4th weekend! As a wise woman once told me “If you drink a fifth on the fourth, you won’t come forth on the fifth.” (Thanks Mom!)

#27In27 – The Official List

Alright folks, we have a list! And a motivated 27-year old looking to complete the list. The fun starts … hmm let’s say Monday. #27In27 here we goooo

The List

  1. Take a calligraphy class: I signed up for a class through Kirkwood in May. I am so pumped!
  2. Run the Bix 7: I ran the Bix 2 summers ago and I LOVED it. The course is hilly as hell but the route is amazing, so much support from the community. I haven’t run much (re: at all) since my half marathon this past summer and it’s time I get back to it.
  3. Cook a new meal once a week: Ugh, planning a meal, buying ingredients, being an adult, having leftovers for daaaayz.
  4. Bake cupcakes once a month: Coworkers, you’re welcome.
  5. Binge a show on Netflix as fast as I can : So many to choose, so little time. I take this challenge very seriously.
  6. Travel more: Road trip anyone?
  7. Read a new book once a month: Great news, I’ve joined a book club! Send me suggestions!
  8. Complete my 2013 scrapbook album: No judging, these things take time.  Looking forward to reflecting on a couple of years ago – off the top of my head, I was in a friend’s wedding, I traveled to California, and probably wore a ton of sweaters.
  9. Play my piano more – at least once a week: Guys, I work in a music store, I have access to some great pieces of music and I need to make use out of my piano in my apartment. Right now, it’s a little dusty and holds my plethora of coasters.
  10. Make Christmas cards this year: Send me your address!
  11. Learn the entire rap of Jump Around by House of Pain: Hmm this is leftover from my #24In24 list.  I got the first verse down, time to tackle the rest.
  12. Learn the entire rap in Waterfalls by TLC: If Will Poulter can learn it for a paying gig, I can certainly learn it for a good party trick.
  13. Complete the Sunday Sudoku: I love me some sudoku.
  14. Find more opportunities to volunteer: I’m thinking food pantry? Race volunteer? Anyone wanna join?
  15. Vote: Republican party – Democratic party – pizza party.
  16. Fitbit personal challenges each month: I LOVE MY FITBIT. Find me and be my buddy. In March, my mom (shout out to Mare Bear) challenged me to 150 miles. I did it. It was super motivating, so now I want to keep doing little personal challenges each month.  April I’ve decided is 190 miles. Who knows what May will bring.
  17. Be a better snail mailer and send out birthday/anniversary cards. Self explanatory.
  18. Donate blood: Never done it before!
  19. Go to a museum and be cultured for a day: Again, self explanatory.
  20. Write more: I really enjoy writing, but it comes in spurts.  Maybe I need to go back to the diary approach (sorry ya’ll, that’ll be for me only). In 1st and 2nd grade I was convinced I’d be an author. I’d like to source this bit of creativity.
  21. Ride my bike more this spring/summer: I didn’t ride at all last year. TRAVESTY.
  22. Grow out my hair and donate it again: Also, maybe I should learn how to curl and style my hair so I don’t wear it down errrday.
  23. Don’t spend my change: It really adds up.
  24. Clean out my closet and donate to Goodwill: My closet is a little overwhelming.
  25.  **SECRET**
  26. **SECRET**
  27. **SECRET**

These last 3 are kind of personal, so I’ll just let you know if they happen or not 🙂 Cross your fingers!

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In case anyone’s forgotten what I look like, here’s a recent picture of me – yesterday, holding my coworker’s puppy. Really don’t know what I’m posting this.

Let’s see, thinking of something to end this post.  Hmmm, my most recent iTunes purchases were:

–Who I Am – Blanca

–Lose My Mind – Brett Eldridge

–Confession – Florida Georgia Line

–I Took A Pill In Ibiza – Mike Posner

 

Five Years and a Little Reflection

DISCLAIMER: This post has nothing to do with my #27In27 list and has everything to do with my Gma.

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It’s hard to believe it’s been five years ago today that my Gma passed away. It was also a Thursday, I was a senior in college. I was ready for a full day of classes, study groups, and work, but one early morning phone call pushed all that to the side. I drove faster and unsafer than I should’ve and made it to the hospital in record time.

I am so thankful I got one more time to see her, to hold her hand, and to have her squeeze my hand when I said “Grandma, it’s Kelly, I love you.” I am so blessed to have had 22 years with her – my fondest memories are our Sunday nights together, where she would make me (and sometimes burn) a grilled cheese sandwich and then we’d play cribbage and watch corny Hallmark movies. My great-uncle Darrel (her brother) and I have carried this tradition on for the past 5 years.

Photo taken in January 2008. I had just received the red coat for Christmas a couple weeks prior and I was thrilled to have a red coat like Gma. I think we look pretty great.)

Photo taken in January 2008. I had just received the red coat for Christmas a couple weeks prior and I was thrilled to have a red coat like Gma. I think we look pretty great.

There are a million things I could tell you about my Gma and once I start, I probably can’t stop. She is my biggest role model, the coolest lady I’ve known, and certainly the classiest. Her sense of style was impeccable and I believe I get my love of accessorizing and matching my outfits directly from her. Her humor and jokes were ridiculous, unexpected, and always hilarious.

“Kelly, if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s don’t ever serve peas to a blind person.”

“Kelly, I really pulled a boner today”

“Oh the stripes in that bathroom. That is just pure sex.”

The nicest thing that anyone has ever said about me was that I reminded them of my Grandma. I cannot think of a higher compliment. Of course I can’t talk about my Gma without mentioning her strong Christian faith and her love for serving God and our church.

I miss her so much – I miss that beautiful smile, that loud laugh, and that caring heart. I am so proud to be Valeda’s granddaughter and I hope I am making her proud up in heaven. I’ll leave you with her favorite Bible verse: Romans 8:28

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

Thanks for reading, sorry for the diary entry.

Aaaand a meme to lighten the mood. #MeanGirls

Aaaand a meme to lighten the mood. #MeanGirls

Taking Stock

Earlier this month I said I wanted to tackle this list and just yesterday I tweeted that I need to write more.  Here’s the “Taking Stock” list that I stole from my friends Emily (Small Stuff Counts) and Allison (Pieces of Passon).

OMG, this is turning into a diary post.

Making: an effort to be more present
Cooking: Ummm, wellllll, there’s always tomorrow.
Drinking : wine in 2 days to celebrate the start of Scandal Season 4 (can I be a Gladiator?)
Reading: About to start “The Husband’s Secret”
Wanting: to finish this post and blog it before I leave for Taco (Tequila) Tuesday.
Looking: at my closet wondering what to wear to work tomorrow.
Playing: My most recent iTunes purchase playlist which includes a lot of girl power anthems and Casting Crowns (par for the course)
Wasting: money on Starbucks on a weekly basis.
Sewing: BAHAHAHA
Wishing: for patience
Enjoying: this playlist. Gosh I’ve got good taste in music.
Waiting: to be a grown-up
Loving: my family and friends unconditionally and through anything.
Hoping: to get back in the exercise groove
Marveling: at God’s hilarious timing.  This song seriously comes on the radio every time I hit a rough patch
Needing: answers for the unanswered situations  (really “wanting”)
Smelling: Real bad sense of smell here, I got nothin’
Wearing: Yoga pants because it’s past 7:00PM
Noticing: that I just might get this sucker done by 8:00
Knowing: I’ve got a lot of things to do at work the next couple of days
Thinking: I need to catch up on new movie trailers
Feeling: Sluggish after a long day in meetings
Bookmarking:  On, just pinning away on Pinterest every night…
Opening: myself up to new experiences (food, travel, people, things)
Feeling: ADHD and popping back and forth between these questions

 

-KG at 7:59PM heyo, done before Taco/Tequila Tuesday.

July 2014

Sitting here eatin’ some cheese and listening to Casting Crowns #HermitLife.  Another busy month at work and on the road visiting friends, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I was at a Wartburg wedding this past month and a fellow Wartburger told me she stalked my Facebook at the end of every month for this blog, so I guess… here it goes (and thanks for reading AH!)

#2: JOIN A NEW GROUP AND/OR VOLUNTEER AND MEET SOME MORE PEOPLE IN THE COMMUNITY.

I’m in something new! I can’t say anything more than that – more coming on this one soon, I would suspect. How’s that for a teaser?

#3: TRY A-NEW-TO-ME RECIPE ONCE A MONTH.

AIN’T GOT TIME YA’LL. The only attempt at a new recipe was a new way to cook corn on the cob. IT’S FOOLPROOF and of course there’s a Youtube video. 4 minutes for each ear of corn, in the microwave. On a weekend trip to Dubuque to visit the future Mr. and Mrs. Conner, we decided to grill out for lunch, and of course our technology Swiss Army knife produced this video and then, 20 minutes later, BAM! 5 ears of perfectly cooked corn on the cob.

The things we ate. BTW, I also contributed by chopping up some onions.

The things we ate, including the microwave corn. BTW, I also contributed by chopping up some onions.

#4: MAKE A BATCH OF CUPCAKES ONCE A MONTH.

Pssssh, yeah right. Here’s a look at all the cupcakes I ate this month

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from Sweetcakes in Olathe, KS

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As a reward for getting the catalog done, we got cupcakes from Scratch! New favorite for now and all time is Cuppy Cake.

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Don’t worry, I shared.

Dubuque, IA cupcake pit-stop.

Dubuque, IA cupcake pit-stop.

#10: SCRAPBOOK MORE – GET CAUGHT UP!

This past Sunday, I had about 5 free hours of nothing. No plans with anyone or anything to do. Turned my iTunes on and away I went! I was able to work on my 2011 scrapbook. Here’s a throwback pic from what I was working on (our first roomie reunion in MN in 2011).

Here is a picture of me unsuccessfully holding a cat, 2007.

Here is a picture of me unsuccessfully holding a cat, 2011.

I really do love scrapbooking. I’ve come a long way from my very first page ever (my 4th grade picture, my chicken scratch writing that said my name and about 100 flower stickers on the page).

#18: FINISH THAT HALF MARATHON – SUCK IT 12.1!

Getting closer and better every day. I’m Internet-Explorer slow, but I’m doing it!

I ran the Ward 4 on the 4th race in Kansas City with Kenan over 4th of July weekend. She suggested we run as superheroes. DONE. Wonder Woman? CHECK. I was pretty pumped about re-wearing my old Halloween costume…and then we got to the run. Yep, I was definitely the only person in a cape.

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Last weekend, I also ran the BIX 7 mile course in Davenport. It was the 40th anniversary of the run AND SO MUCH FUN. Ray Ray and I were up at 4:15 and on the road before 5 to get there in time. Our goal was to finish in 1:30, and we officially crossed the line at 1:28! The course was hilly, but almost entirely residential. The streets were lined with people and they were awesome and super supportive. We ran the whole thing and had a blast. I’d do it again in a heartbeat! (That is if my heart doesn’t give out HEYO).

We had so much fun!

We had so much fun!

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Didn’t need this guy! My mom didn’t find this picture funny.

#20: GO TO MORE HAWKEYE FOOTBALL GAMES AND/OR TAILGATES.

30 more days til kickoff ya’ll, just thought you should know.

#22: BINGE WATCH THE FULL SEASONS OF MAD MEN AND BREAKING BAD.

I am still fully committed to this and am loooooving Netflix, but I got distracted by Orange is the New Black. OMG amazing show. Ask me about my favorite quote from OITNB. Right now I’m working on the Animorphs TV series, moving to House of Cards, and then I think I’ll be ready for MM and BB. Any other suggestions?!

#23: DESIGN MORE AND GET BETTER AT INDESIGN.

Last month I touched on busy season in the marketing department with our yearly catalog being designed. I’m proud to say we put that 208 page baby to bed on July 9, and I even had a hand in updating and designing 2 of the pages.  Today we wished fare-well to the best damn designer there is, she left us with this one piece of advice: RESPECT THE WHITE SPACE.

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July recap in pictures (JK, Imma tell ya about it):

4th of July weekend: Kenan and Kel together again in KC!  In the span of 3 days – we went to 2 movies, ran 4 miles, had 2 hours of pool time, watched 5 episodes of OITNB, and I’m sure s’more numbers of fun stuff.  Saw some fireworks, ate some cheesecake, did some shopping, generally having the best time ever.  I love that girl.

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S’more cheesecake and yes I will have s’more.

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Partying like it’s 1776.

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22 Jump Street – these reclining chairs almost made it worth it.

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Overland Park, KS fireworks

Dubuque weekend: Oh my gosh, we were in Dubuque the same weekend as Fish Fly weekend!  What is Fish Fly weekend? A bunch of bugs swarming around for 24 hours and dying, it happens once or twice a year in river towns.  You literally sweep the streets and hose your houses down after the swarm.  Sometimes you can even slip on a pile of them and fall down and scrape your knee.  (Just an example, it’s not like it happened to anyone in our group) We had a great weekend in Dubuque with JC and T-Fed.  They taught me how to play Hand and Foot, we went to the Farmers Market, on a booze cruise, to a winery, and a bike ride up the bluff.

The snap to prepare us for Fish Flies!

The snap to prepare us for Fish Flies!

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A little down time and probably some bad luck.

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The best bartender ever.

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Booze Cruise!

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Great sunburn after this ride.

Luke Bryan Concert with my bestie: MOOAAAAR LUKE PLZ.  Followed by Wedding weekend: Congrats Bryan and Sam! SOOOOO much fun to see a bunch of Wartburg friends and have a flippin’ ice cream bar.  PLUS I got to see Kenan twice in one month!

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So so so so good.

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Seriously love this picture.

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Beautiful bride, Purdy groom.

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Praise Jeeeezus for ice cream sundae bars.

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Kenan and Kel and the macarena

Last weekend: Bix 7 miler! Brittan in town! Church! Scrapbooking! Cribbage! Ice Cream! (In a nutshell)

Ohh, fellow Cedar Rapidians (or really anyone in the Corridor) – I’d highly suggest checking out Bistro on the River in downtown (bistroontheriver.com).  My friend Brittany has worked really hard to open up her own restaurant and it’s awesome.  It’s cool to know the head chef – she’s famous.  Here’s the Hoopla article from this weekend.  Ray Ray and I checked out Bistro last night and LOVED everything!

Cutie!

Cutie!

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Current song obessions:

Meghan Trainor – All About That Bass

Rita Ora – I Will Never Let You Down

Becky G – Shower (and also really good product placement for Cover girl)

Charli XCX – Boom Clap

Demi Lovato – Really Don’t Care

Echosmith – Cool Kids

I’m ready for August! I’ll be in 3 states in 5 weeks. And when I’m not traveling, I’ll be watching Netflix.

-KG

June 2014 (1 day early!)

xt5BB

MMMERRHH GUYS.  I am not keeping up on this blog or keeping up on this list.  Every month I re-read my list of things to do and I have this inner conversation with myself “Kelly, DO THIS”.  You’d think I’d have more time in the summer to do some of these things, and that’s just not the case.  AIN’T GOT TIME. Blessed to be busy? If that’s a thing?

#2 – JOIN A NEW GROUP AND/OR VOLUNTEER AND MEET SOME MORE PEOPLE IN THE COMMUNITY

Okay, maybe I did do this one.  In the past couple of months – I’ve re-joined the summer tennis league and met some new fun ladies to play tennis with.  Our Bible study group (whom we affectionately refer to as YABS) has really grown in numbers this summer, and I also volunteered at church to help with Vacation Bible School this past month.  Success story – only had two criers the first night (and I wasn’t one of them!) Also got called Grandma the second night, so there’s that.

Helping lead music at VBS = so much arm-ography.

Helping lead music = so much arm-ography.

#3 – TRY A NEW TO ME RECIPE ONCE A MONTH

Found this breakfast recipe on my virtual recipe box, aka PINTEREST. Super easy, because that’s all I can handle.

Pancake bites!

Pancake bites!

Oh, fruit and bacon because I'm a good hostess.

Oh… and fruit and bacon because I’m a good hostess.

One happy customer at Kelly's Kickass Kitchen

One happy customer at Kelly’s Kickass Kitchen

#4 – MAKE A BATCH OF CUPCAKES ONCE A MONTH

Pink Lemonade Cupcakes! Found this on my virtual recipe box, aka PINTEREST.  Super easy, because that’s all I can handle.  Hmm, heard that before? So here’s my issue, that I forget I have until I bake.  I DON’T OWN MEASURING SPOONS. I bake so infrequently (once a month, if you’ve caught on by now), that I forget I don’t own them until the recipes call for Tablepoons, teaspoons, and the like.  I like to use the method called “wingin’ it”.  Errrthing looks like a Tablespoon to me.

These cupcakes turned out pretty great, the recipe made 3 dozen.  I brought them into work. One coworker said they could have been stronger, while another coworker (the CEO, NBD) choked on hers.  Hmmm…

Added some dye to make pink batter. Once baked, it was an awkward brown.

Added some dye to make pink batter. Once baked, it was an awkward brown.

 

Pink frosting, because DUH.

Pink frosting, because DUH.

Thanking one of my best friends Nicki - she has supplied me with what seems to be an endless supply of sprinkles.

Thanking one of my best friends Nicki – she has supplied me with what seems to be an endless supply of sprinkles.

#10 – SCRAPBOOK MORE, GET CAUGHT UP!

I’ve almost convinced myself to get back in the scrappin’ game.  Earlier this month I spent a weekend in CF visiting two of my former college roomies.  We had a MARATHON scrapbooking event, and scrapbooked B’s entire wedding album, in 10 hours!  Sat down at 2:30PM, took a short dinner break, and finished at 12:30AM.   Yes, people it was a marathon.

Next up, getting myself  caught up.  I’m stuck in the year 2011!

B and I ready for a marathon scrapbooking day.

B and I ready for a marathon scrapbooking day.

#22 – BINGE WATCH THE ENTIRE SERIES OF MAD MEN AND BREAKING BAD.

GUYS, I GOT NETFLIX LAST NIGHT.  There probably won’t be another blog post ever again, because I’ll be in my room, watching Netflix.  I’ve added to the list of series to watch (in no particular order):

  • Once Upon A Time (Season 1 to current)
  • Arrow (season 2)
  • Agents of SHIELD (season 1)
  • The Americans (Season 2)
  • Girls (Season 3)
  • Breaking Bad
  • Mad Men
  • Orange is the New Black <— Think I’m gonna start with this one
  • House of Cards
  • Sherlock
  • Dexter
  • Shameless

#23 – DESIGN MORE AND GET BETTER WITH INDESIGN

We are wrapping up catalog season at work, aka the most stressful time of year (at least for me).  Our two designers have spent since March/April designing in-house our 208 page catalog using new technology to store data.  It’s a crazy process and we can see the light at the end of the tunnel.  They’ve basically been cocooned at their desks solely working on this catalog… meaning I’ve been trying to pick up some of the design projects and get them out the door.  In the past couple of months, I’ve designed a couple of in-store posters, a direct mail piece (with folds!), and a postcard.  It’s almost like I know what I’m doing.

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I guess I did do something awesome in May, I FINISHED THAT CUPCAKE PUZZLE.

Worst cupcake experience to date.

Worst cupcake experience to date.

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So what am I doing, that I’m not doing this list?  I’ve pretty much had something every single weekend.  In the past couple of months, I’ve been in Pella for the Tulip Festival, Cedar Falls for roomie reunion, Des Moines because FRIENDS, Burlington/Quad Cities for a road trip, and ran a 5K.

 

If you ain't Dutch, you ain't much.

May 3: If you ain’t Dutch, you ain’t much.

May 3: Pella Tulip Festival

May 3: Pella Tulip Festival

YABS bonfire night, complete with s'mores

YABS bonfire night, complete with s’mores

Funny mirrors and even funnier friend at Adventureland.

Funny mirrors and even funnier friends at Adventureland.

Always have time for ice cream.

Always have time for ice cream.

I love our roomie reunions.

I love our roomie reunions.

One last picture, because my dog is adorable and loves sticks.

One last picture, because my dog is adorable and loves sticks.

What’s up in July? Ohhh, just traveling the next 3 weekends – Kansas City, Dubuque, and Minnesota! Throw in a 7 mile run at the end of the month, and we’ll call it good.

Until next time (but not really, because I’ll be watching Netflix)…

-KG

 

March 2014 (only 1 week late)

After some pestering from certain individuals here is my March post! Whoops, clearly not following #1 on this list very well. This just means you get to read comma filled diary entries of my boring life TWICE this month!

#3: Try a new-to-me-recipe once a month

Let me introduce you to the best recipe in the entire world, “Welcome Home Sandwiches”. My wonderful mother Mare Bear has made these for years. I had my roomies over for a weekend in March and wanted a quick recipe that I couldn’t ruin too bad. Enter sammiches! I even left out 1 ingredient and no one seemed to mind. In fact, one roomie even asked for the recipe! Success! There is no photographic evidence of the sammiches, but the recipe is below.

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#4: Make a batch of cupcakes or dessert once a month

Work potlucks are the most exciting and terrifying event for me.  Who doesn’t love a Food Day? Oh, wait, I’m supposed to bring something? Shooooooot.  Again, my wonderful mother Mare Bear came to the rescue and suggested making Creme De Menthe Cake to bring to our St. Party’s Day potluck.  Dessert? Alcohol? I’m in!

Creme De Menthe Cake.

Creme De Menthe Cake.

 #9: Read 2 new books a month

Guys, I don’t have the energy to write a good review for both of these books.  But I recommend either of them and I’d totes give you a review, just not tonight.

The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak and Winter Garden by Kristin Hannah.

#14: Spend Less Money

Welllll, I only went shopping two weekends in a row with friends in March.  I wasn’t really saving much money, and then my tax return came in and I felt like this.

#24: Be a better beer drinker and not have to resort to Bud Light when I go out

It is good to know people who know beer, and also phone apps. I’m now tracking all my new beer and reviewing them on the Untappd app.  I tried a ShockTop HoneyCrisp Apple Wheat Beer on tap at a great place called “61 Chophouse”.  Proceeded to buy a six pack the next time I was at the grocery store.  And then because I’m super into trying new things, I tried a second new-to-me- beer the next day called “Windmill Wheat” from Windstream Brewery in Amana.   Next up – getting away from the wheats and trying something a little more hoppy.  And figuring out what hoppy means.

ShockTop Honey Crisp Apple Wheat. YUM.

ShockTop Honey Crisp Apple Wheat. YUM.

Windmill Wheat at the Amanas. Photo credit to Nick Jellings and nail polish credit to OPI/meee

Windmill Wheat at the Amanas.
Photo credit to Nick Jellings and nail polish credit to OPI/meee

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I’m starting a new installment called “Look How Slowly I’m Putting This Puzzle Together”, where essentially, you will see how slowly I’m putting together a 1,000 piece heart shaped cupcake puzzle I got for my birthday (in February).

March 3, night 1: Holy crap look how easy this is going to be.

March 3, night 1: Holy crap look how easy this is going to be.

March 31, night-I've-already-lost-track.  A little slow going.

March 31, night-I’ve-already-lost-track.
A little slow going.

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The month of March was pretty great – I stayed pretty busy and got to travel and see a bunch of friends, including the roomies, my Des Moines peeps, and Nicki who normally is in KC! (Can you blame a girl for not writing her monthly blog?)

Besties. Birthdays. Babes.

Besties. Birthdays. Babes.

Roomie reunions are the best.

Roomie reunions are the best.

Ahhh another installment on the blog - Nick and I's Burger and Beer Tour.  61 Chophouse was da bomb dot com!

Ahhh another installment on the blog – Nick and I’s Burger and Beer Tour. 61 Chophouse was da bomb dot com!

March came to a sad end for me – I had to say goodbye to 5 friends I’ve made over the years. We drank together, we roomed together, we slapped together.  Whomp whomp, yes I’m talking about How I Met Your Mother.  I’ve read every good bye article, theory, and rant regarding the finale.  Here is my favorite image from all my finds.

From a blue French Horn to a yellow umbrella.

 See you in a few short weeks for my April review!  (PS, I’ve already started drinking new-to-me beer!)

November 2013

Whomp whomp, another lack luster month of my #24In24 List.  I just re-read over my list and I’ve got a lot to do in the next 2 months before I turn 25!  Most importantly, learning the entire Jump Around rap.

#7: MAKE A BATCH OF CUPCAKES ONCE A MONTH AND BE A LEGIT CUPCAKE QUEEN.

The cupcake commissioner should take my cupcake queen title away after this month’s disaster.  Last Tuesday I decided to make cupcakes to bring to work the next day as a pre-Thanksgiving feast.  I’ve still got this marshmallow obsession, so I decided upon “Marshmallow in the Middle Cupcakes” off my Pinterest board.  This decision went from bad to worse.  I didn’t make enough of the batter, my marshmallows didn’t melt… and then they burnt.  I set my fire alarm off in my apartment and the batch of cupcakes ended up in the dumpster.  I fortunately have found some great sounding Christmas cookie/bar recipes, so I have this next month to make up for it.

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Fail.

#13: MAKE CHRISTMAS CARDS FOR 2013 TELLING EVERYONE HOW WONDERFUL 24 IS. 

I have initially started this and will finish in December! If you’ve read this post thus far and would like a Christmas card, send me your address!

#22: READ A NEW BOOK, 2 A MONTH

I have found 2 books to read for December! The Book Thief and Lord of the Flies. I’ve had The Book Thief for years and never read it.  Now they’ve made a movie of it and of course I’ll need to read the book first.

I read Lord of the Flies in high school and it was recently brought up at confirmation (of all places).  I brought my copy the next week to one of my confirmation “mentees”, but she’s in the middle of Catching Fire, so gave me some more time to read it before she wants it 🙂

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Here are some other pictures from the month of November.

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Visited my sister in California. The highlight for me was visiting the Cupcake ATM!

Went to the last Iowa football home game against Michigan, with Becky Joyful.  Iowa won and we froze.

Went to the last Iowa football home game against Michigan, with Becky Joyful. Iowa won and we froze.

Tanner being cute as always when we decorated the tree on 11/30.

Tanner being cute as always when we decorated the tree on 11/30.

Hope you had a great Thanksgiving with your family and friends.  If Black Friday shopping is your thing, I hope you didn’t get trampled and that your wallet isn’t too empty.

Thanksgiving 2013: Can I count stirring gravy as my new to me recipe of the month?

Thanksgiving 2013: Can I count stirring gravy as my new to me recipe of the month?

Thankful for cool parents.

Thankful for cool parents.

 

October 2013 (aka Half Marathon Heart Attack)

This will be a relatively short post, because I did 12/13ths of one of my things to do.  Ahhh yes, my half marathon, what a story.

#5 – RUN A HALF MARATHON

I got this crazy idea back in December 2012 to do this list and run a half marathon was one of the first things I thought of.  I HATE(D) RUNNING.  I thought if I challenged myself to run a half, I’d learn to love running, I’d slim down these child bearing hips a bit, and be one of those cool people always in running shoes with my hurrr up, looking athletic.

Admittedly, I could have trained a little more for this half.  I didn’t stick to a good running schedule and was pretty sporadic, just willing myself to not stop until I reached my goal.  I reached 8 miles, which lezzbehonest, is a feat in itself.   My mother (who I should know by now is pretty much ALWAYS right) was worried that I hadn’t trained enough or was going to roll my ankle. I assured her I would not.

The day of the half arrived.  I was doing the IMT Half Marathon in Des Moines, and I highly suggest it.  Very well organized, good route, and a ton of fun.  My bestie Sara and I were running with her older brother Chip and his bestie, Bart.  I was SO excited to run and DO THIS THING.  The run started (please note, it is a RUN for me, not a RACE 😉 ).  I felt great the entire time and ran the whole thing.  The spectators were awesome.  The best sign I saw was “This parade sucks, thow me some candy”

Sare Bear took off from our pack of 4 and finished in under 2.5 hours (because she’s a beast).  Chip stayed in sight with Sara and Chip hung out with me.  I had a good time with Bart and felt really great knowing that I was going to finish and there would be someone with me.  (You bond quite quickly with someone you’re running with, I’ve learned).   I had my phone on me and would text my mom every two miles just so she knew I was alive and kicking.

At 11.98 miles I texted her “12”.  At 12 miles I turned to Bart and said “I wanna slow down, I feel dizzy”.  Before I even slowed down, I had passed out.  I didn’t brace myself and hit my head.  Apparently I was out for 3 minutes or so, but came to, kicking and not pleased.  Let me tell you, the moment you wake up from passing out, realize you’re 1.1 miles from finishing and probably not going to finish, is DEVASTATING.   I’m not much of a cryer, so my baditude was with the EMTs who were on the scene and helping me when I came to.  I did not want to get in the ambulance and apparently kicked someone who offered to finish the race for me.  I WANTED TO FINISH SO BAD.  I tried to bargain with the EMTs to let me walk the rest and then they could take me to the hospital.  After much whining and dining, I got in the ambulance and went to the ER.

Bart stayed with me in the ambulance and all the way to the ER.   Let me tell you, calling your mother from an ambulance is great fun.  She answered (thinking I had finished the run) very excited for me.  When she realized I wasn’t joking about passing out and being in an ambulance, Mare Bear got real worried and her and my dad hit the road to Des Moines.  My dad even went 71 on the highway.

At the hospital, I had some tests run on me, including two EKGs, and it was determined I had a “prolonged QT interval”.  Basically my heart wasn’t keeping up with my body and my heartbeat was irregular.  There’s an actual syndrome called prolonged QT which can lead to sudden dizziness, fainting, or DEATH.  I think the last part freaked Mare Bear out a little bit, and the hospital too, so I stayed overnight to run an ultrasound and echocardiogram the next day.

After two days in the hospital, three doctor appointments the week after, and a 48 hour heart monitor, I’ve been cleared.  Juuuust overexertion and not training well enough (that’s what makes me mad).  But please note, my mom thought I would roll my ankle, and I did not.

Looking back to where I started – huffing and puffing after 1.5 miles and shin splints, to running 12/13ths of a half marathon, I am pretty proud of myself.  I don’t mind running now, and if I’m going to go for a run, it’s not going to be 1.5 miles, it’s going to be 4 at least.  I’m looking forward to running again and I WILL FINISH A HALF MARATHON.

Wearing garbage bags to keep warm the morning of the race.

Wearing garbage bags to keep warm the morning of the race.

Our verse is Phil 4:13. "I can do all things through Him who strengthens me".  I would repeat this to myself over and over!

Our verse is Phil 4:13. “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me”. I would repeat this to myself over and over! We made matching headbands the night before.

Here we are running, about mile 2!

Here we are running, about mile 2! Chip is in blue, and my new best fraaaan Bart is in orange. 

My friends Justin and Trisha (who also ran the half AND GOT ENGAGED AFTER!) and Nick (remember him, my biking buddy?) came and visited me on my first night.  And they brought cupcakes!

My friends Justin and Trisha (who also ran the half AND GOT ENGAGED AFTER!) and Nick (remember him, my biking buddy?) came and visited me on my first night. And they brought cupcakes!

Although I’m thinking this blog gets about an average of three readers a month, I just wanted to thank my family and friends and everyone who checked up on me during this little incident.  It’s hard to feel bad when you’ve got such awesome support from a great group of people.

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September 2013

I know you’ve got my list memorized, so you probably remember #12 – Unplug from Facebook and Twitter for a whole day.  Welp, I’m almost unplugged, my iOS 7 update has not gone well. I can’t receive any texts, get any Twitter notifications, or open my Snapchats.  Seriously, the only people who have had it worse than this is the Donner party.

#6: TRY A NEW-TO-ME RECIPE ONCE A MONTH, OR MORE IF I END UP LIKING IT. 

These are cop-out recipes fo sho, but they are new to me.  Chocolate chip muffins (mix + water + chocolate chips).  Of course me baking something always requires a couple of questions to my mother. “Mom, what consistency am I aiming for on these cupcakes?” “Muffin consistency”. REALLY?!

Also–try out my new favorite trail mix: peanuts, M&Ms, and candy corn. Salty, sweet, and chocolate, a girl’s best fraaan.

Muffin tops.

Muffin tops.

#7: MAKE A BATCH OF CUPCAKES ONCE A MONTH AND BE A LEGIT CUPCAKE QUEEN. 

This month I made Funfetti Cake Batter Fudge – found it on my Pinterest.  The recipe went off without a hitch, except the part where it was covered in tin foil.  I made the fudge for the confirmation kiddos (btw, I’m a confirmation mentor this year!) and I had to make sure each piece didn’t have extra tin foil pieces in the funfetti. The kiddos liked the fudge and they even told me they liked my fudge more than the next week’s treats.

Someone didn't take any because he was worried about his insulin. I'll take that as a compliment.

Someone didn’t take any because he was worried about his insulin. I’ll take that as a compliment.

#19: DO A PINTEREST CRAFT PROJECT ONCE A MONTH. 

CRAFT FAIL, that’s all I’ve got to say.  To make a long story short, I just spent the better part of 90 minutes carving four fake pumpkins with my work’s logo into them.  Aaaaaand, it was a big disaster, as in they kept caving in and not holding together.  The proof is in the picture.

Fail fail fail.

Fail fail fail.

#22: READ A NEW BOOK, 2 A MONTH. 

Working on a book called “The Story” as part of our church wide Bible Study.  Sometimes I forget to read my assigned chapters, but my wonderful friend Becky Joyful always sends incredibly detailed emails with a summary and questions.

#24: DO SOMETHING CRAZY – I DID A 60 MILE BIKE RIDE!

I decided for my 24th thing, to take part in the Gran Gable Bike ride in Iowa on Sept 1.  I had gotten a new bike earlier this summer and was excited to do something different. (Plus training for long bike routes meant not training for a half marathon).   The routes were 25, 60, or 100 miles.  My part time boyfran Nick and I decided to do the 60 mile ride.  He did the entire week of RAGBRAI this summer, so he would have no problem with 1 day, he’d just have to put up with me.  I couldn’t stress to Nick enough how slow I might go up certain hills, by gosh darn it, I got up every single one.  I had a blast!  About the 2nd rest stop, I remembered that I hadn’t remembered to put on any sunscreen.  Whoops.  I figured, a little color is better than none. Welllll, you can scroll and see for yourself what happened.

I loved the bike ride.  About mile 50 I was over it (and my back was so hot, I’m sure you could fry eggs off it).  But I finished and I was so proud of myself!  Plus the beer at the end of the route made it all worth it!

Before the ride, we are pumped!

Before the ride, we are pumped!

Post ride beer!

Post ride beer!

Ask my mom about waiting at the finish line.

Ask my mom about waiting at the finish line.

 

Not sure what is more depressing - my back being this burnt or the fact that I am this pale in real life.

Sunday night after the ride: Not sure what was more depressing – my back being that burnt or the fact that I am this pale in real life.

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CURRENT OBSESSIONS:  

2 this month!   If you know me, you know my *NSYNC obsession, and of course, Justin Timberlake was my favorite of the group. You also know I love Twitter.  The #Hashtag video with Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Fallon is hilarious.  My roomies and I hashtagged everything this weekend (sidenote, 3 obsessions–love my roomies).

2nd obsession – it’s TV premiere season.  I’m a TV junkie. If there was a program like AA for TV Junkies… I wouldn’t be in it, because I’d be watching TV.  I’ve started a couple new shows – Hostages on CBS and Agents of SHIELD on ABC. Along with the usual suspects – How I Met Your Mother, Arrow, Criminal Minds, Big Bang Theory, Glee, Say Yes to the Dress.

Had to share this picture: me and my new boo Warner. (Really he's my old roomie Stacy's son, not just a random baby).

Had to share this picture: me and my new boo Warner. He’s slowly making me change my mind about kiddos being scary.