Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Headed Down South

        Wow, those three weeks went by really fast and it’s about time for me to head back south tomorrow.  But never fear, the fun isn’t over yet.  Two of my life friends, Ally and Hannah, are coming to visit NashVegas for Memorial Day Weekend and I am thrilled to show them around my town.  Their one request for the weekend?  Biscuits.  Well, biscuits and honky tonk.  Both of which I can most certainly provide.  And since it is finally starting to feel like summer time here in Philadelphia I can only imagine how hot and steamy it is going to be back home.  I guess that means it’s time for that pink lemonade…sipped poolside of course.  And that is precisely where you will find me.  Soaking up as much of a tan as possible that will hopefully hold me over through a summer spent in the frigid air conditioning and fluorescent lights of the Vanderbilt Medical Center.  I have a funny feeling that this year’s summer school is going to be just a little different than summer school at WFU which consisted of one hour of class per day, countless hours at the Crowne Oaks pool, and some day partying and tubing down the Dan River on the side.  Ugh, this whole grown-up thing is overrated. 
Beautiful Summer Sunset over the Cumberland River

Friday, May 21, 2010

What Makes You Happy?

Quite often on this blog you will find me whining about schoolwork, complaining about how stressed I am, and just generally bitching about things that haven’t gone my way.  But I am generally a very happy person, so I think it is important to spend a little time talking about the things that I love in addition to those that drive me nuts.  This list is far from all-inclusive, but here are ten things that make me very happy.

 Ladybugs.  When I was little, my older sister called me “Little Lady” and my room was covered in ladybugs.  I have always loved them and word on the street is that they bring good luck.  So the next time you see one of these little guys make a wish before you swat it away.

 Pink Lemonade.  Though typically a summertime favorite, I will drink it any day of the week, any time of the year.  I also love it in cake form.  It is sold at Dewey’s Bakery in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and my mom got one for me for my birthday every year in college.

3.      Fox Point.  Hands down, this is my favorite place on earth.  It is our “family camp” on the Eastern Shore in Maryland and nothing makes me happier than turning onto the gravel road that leads to this most perfect place to spend a summer, (or any), day.

4.      Real Simple Magazine.  There is something therapeutic about learning 10 new uses for a colander or reading about how to feng shui your bedroom.

5.      Dogs.  I have been begging my parents to get another dog ever since we lost our beloved Moose. 

 And though no dog will ever replace the Moose Man, I am so excited because this little one is going to be my new roommate this Fall.  A golden retriever/boxer mix named Riley!

6.      Snail Mail.  There is nothing like getting a letter or package in the mail.  Sure, email is great but there is something old fashioned and romantic about an envelope with a stamp on it.  Agree?

7.       A back scratch.  I have a friend who has a business idea that involves what she calls a “Scratchery.”  Though the thought of all that dead skin is a little repulsive, paying a couple bucks to get your back scratched sounds pretty good to me.

8.      Gerbera daisies and sunflowers.  I dare you to find a girl who doesn’t smile when given a bouquet of these.

9.      Pretzels.  For as long as I can remember, my family has had a pretzel jar in our kitchen and I am convinced I would be ten pounds lighter had my parents not introduced this tradition into our home.

10   Being with the people I love.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…I don’t like to be alone.  I love to be surrounded by good friends and family members who, lucky for me, also fall into that friend category.

 P.S.  You may have noticed that the blog has deviated from its original theme since I have been away from school and Nashvegas for the past few weeks.  But never fear, just two more weeks and I will have plenty of juicy details of cleft palates and traumatic brain injuries for you to enjoy.  You can’t wait, right!?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Grass is Always Greener

            The saying that “we always want what we can’t have” very much applies to my life.  Though I’m getting better at living in the moment and not wishing for the things that I do not or can not have, over the past few weeks I have caught myself wishing for the busy-ness and sense of a “to do” list that has defined my life over the past nine months.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not all that anxious to get back to the world of all-nighters, mounds of flashcards, and stress to spare, and my weekends have been nothing short of fabulous but the weekdays filled with a whole lot of nothing are starting to get old.  You see though this is pseudo-summer for me, my family and friends are still in full on school and work mode.  Which leaves me with little entertainment and human interaction during the 9-5.  Have I mentioned yet that I am a person who does NOT like to be alone?  I have already finished two non-school books, packed up the majority of my room for the big Ball Family move, and run more errands for my mom than I care to admit.  So I’m thinking of taking on a project.  Making a scrapbook of all of my pictures and souvenirs from my semester abroad almost three years ago?  Taking up tennis?  Yeah, probably not…hand-eye coordination is pretty much non-existent in my life.  Maybe I’ll learn to sew?  Brush up on my yoga?  The possibilities are endless, right?  

Monday, May 17, 2010

Best. Weekend. Ever.

            This past weekend I made my way to New York City to reunite with sorority sisters, some of whom I hadn’t seen in almost 6 months.  Way too long after spending four years of college glued to each other’s sides.  Many of us live in NYC but others came for the weekend from Long Island, Connecticut, Virginia, and of course, Tennessee.  Though I had no doubt that the weekend would be fun, I really couldn’t have imagined a better three days.  I had forgotten how much I loved going anywhere and everywhere with a crew of at least 10 girlfriends in tow.  In college we were known as the red hurricane due to our tendency to go out in red Chi O t-shirts and invade a frat party at a moment’s notice.  To some?  Absolutely obnoxious.  To us?  Absolutely fabulous.  This weekend was no different.  On Friday and Saturday night we gallivanted from bar to bar around the city, laughing to the point of tears in the back of cabs, and just generally loving on each other after being apart for so long.  And each morning you could find us in a hungover heap, all 7 girls piled onto one bed, rehashing the events of the previous night.  Perfection.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

I'm Free!

            It’s summatime.  Okay so maybe not officially.  But in the world of this grad school grandma it is as close as it’s going to get.  So I am embracing these three weeks off, shedding my grandma-ness, and living it up while I have the chance.  Plans include some much needed reuniting with my high school BFFs, visiting sorority sisters in NYC, and hanging out with Katie in DC.  I also plan on reading books that have absolutely nothing to do with speech and language (gasp!) and spending money that would typically be used for groceries and excessive amounts of coffee, on new clothes and shoes.  So sue me.
First up on my non-school reading list!
New necklace?  Don't mind if I do.
Love me some polka dots and a ruffled hem.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Flood Update

            I don't really know how to put the damage that the city of Nashville has experienced and the state of disaster the city is in into words so I figured I would post some pictures so that you can get an idea of what things are like.  I was able to make it safely home to Philadelphia on Wednesday and though I am not in the Nashville anymore I am constantly thinking about it.  And it looks like I made it back just in time as both of my county's water purification plants have been shut down and there is no longer clean drinking water where I live.  Not to mention the fact that the whole city is beginning to take on the pungent scent of a moldy swim towel.  SO many people have lost their homes and everything they own.  It is predicted that it will take months, if not years, for Music City to be back on its feet again.  And who knows whether historic landmarks, like Opryland and the Grand Ole Opry, will ever be completely restored.  Please keep the people of Nashville in your thoughts and prayers as they try to clean up and move forward from this mess.
A view of downtown Nashville (2nd Ave & Broadway)
Another shot of downtown
Spotted in the grocery store parking lot
Inside the Grand Ole sad

LP Field...home of the Tennessee Titans
Cascades Atrium in the Opryland Hotel
Nashville Flood Relief T-Shirts (find them on facebook...all proceeds go to help victims of the flood)

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Rain, Rain GO AWAY (seriously)

Just a little rain?  I don’t think so.  This is insane.  I woke up this morning at 5:30am to the sweet sound of tornado sirens and crashing thunder.  The streets are flooding and cars are literally floating away.  As a result…I have not yet secured my cup of coffee and am starting to get grumpy about it.  But at least I have been kept up to date on the weather conditions outside thanks to the ever-professional Channel 4 news crew.  Just a few highlights from their expert reporting:

o "We just saw a canoe going by like it was a river-but it's not. It's a backyard."
o “Stay inside. Don't be a 'look-ey lou’."
o “Don’t risk your life to get a video, but if you do, please send it to Channel 4!”
o "There's a whale of a lot of rain, the flooding has gotten very out of's just a big mess”
Yeah that's supposed to be a road...not a river
Flooding in Belle Meade
Cars floating down 21st Ave.
Raining in the kitchen...woohoo!
Okay so clearly the bowls aren't working...3 inches of rain in the window...greatttttt

    And though the comments from the local weathermen are certainly comical and I am able to joke about all of the flooding since I am nice and cozy and dry inside my house, not everyone in middle Tennessee has been so lucky.  At least five people have died as a result of raging floodwaters and countless people have lost their homes to serious water damage.  So please say a prayer for the people of the greater Nashville area in the hopes that everything will dry out soon!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Someone Bring Me Coffee...please?

            I have often wondered why pizza and Chinese food are pretty much the only foods that get delivered.  Why not breakfast food?  Or ice cream?  Or more importantly, why not coffee?  You see it is Saturday morning and it is currently POURING rain.  Like not just raining but borderline monsoon.  And if you're a regular reader you will remember that it was doing this same thing last Saturday.  It's getting old.  Especially since this last week when I was locked in the Bill Wilkerson Center and busy taking my finals, it was 85 degrees and sunny.  Perfect pool weather.  And let me tell you...this girl is in serious need of a tan.  But anyway, here I sit in my pajamas (I know its noon...don't judge me), my cozy little house, watching the rain outside and thinking about all of the things I would do for a large cup of coffee.  The list is getting pretty long.  And why not just make my own coffee, you might ask?  Well I would...except for the fact that I put the canister back in the cabinet last time I made a cup, even though there was less than a tablespoon of coffee grounds left inside.  So when I opened it up this morning to make my own coffee (in an effort to save some $$ and to avoid having to venture out into the flooding rain) it was a total psych-out.  So anyone out there looking for a new business venture take note.  COFFEE DELIVERY.  You can thank me later.