Monday, November 28, 2011

Tuesday Testimonials......

Tuesday Testimonial Rant........

Today's testimonial is actually more of a rant. I apologize in advance for anyone I might offend by this (but I'm really hoping you agree with what I have to say.) I'm stealing this idea from my friend over at Jotter Girl. She has a series of posts she refers to as Open Letters. The letters are aimed at stores, celebrities, etc. Basically anyone she needs to get something off her chest about. I think she's definitely onto something here.....

My testimonial is aimed at a certain Buffalo Bills football player, who demonstrated a clear lack of judgement, class, intelligence, brain cells....(you get the picture) during the Bills game against the Jets yesterday. For anyone who may have missed the incident , Stevie Johnson chose to put on an elaborate dance, celebrating a touchdown, while at the same time mocking, Plaxico Burress of the Jets. The "dance" resulted in a penalty, thereby negating the touchdown, a touchdown that probably would have won the game for the Bills by the way. The Jets turned around and scored a touchdown, by none other than Plaxico Burress (oh the irony.) The Bills did have one last opportunity to win the game when Ryan Fitzpatrick delivered a perfectly thrown ball to none other than Stevie Johnson, only to have it bounce sadly out of his hands. Interestingly, there was no dance this time.......So here is my Open Letter to Stevie Johnson.

Dear Stevie -

Seriously? Celebrating with an ridiculous dance after scoring a touchdown?

Pssst! Hey Stevie? In the Real World, what you did (scoring a touchdown), would be considered completing a days work. The next time you're out in the Real World, take a look around. When the waitress brings your food, the cashier counts out your change, the mechanic changes the oil in your car, the doctor completes your physical (I can go on but I hope you get the point), check out what they do after. Ask yourself these questions:

Are they doing any kind of celebration dance?
Are they taunting the other employees about doing a better job?
Are they flapping their arms like 5 year olds?

No? Oh right, maybe it's because:

A.) They don't make a living playing a "game."
B.) They're adults, not children
C,) In the Real World their behavior would result in being fired, or at the very least suspended. (Which by the way would have happened if you worked for me.)

But, in today's world where money is the Almighty Word (Penn St??), this will never happen. Winning the game and making fast money is much more important than setting an example for all of the kids out there, who sadly look up to you Mr. Johnson. The love of the game is gone and has been replaced by dollars and cents (sadly not that sense).

Oh, and for a team that has lost 4 games in a row, I would think you'd be a little more humble about one measly touchdown. I could have maybe given you the benefit of the doubt,had you owned up to the mistake like a Man, but listening to your comments on the news coverage tonight - I have lost all respect. Not only did you make a half hearted attempt at an apology, but when asked about the (perfect) pass that you dropped at the end of the game, you slyly indicated that it was Ryan Fitzpatrick's fault, as the pass was "not where I expected it to be".

Seriously? Seriously? There really are no words left to say......



PS Oh, and after you dropped that pass I noticed there was no dance.....
There's no dance for messing up at work?
Hmmmmm......maybe you should work on that one.
I'm pretty sure I can see more opportunities to use it in your future.

So.......anyone else want to add to my letter?

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Give Thanks.......

 In honor of the Thanksgiving 
holiday I thought I would take time to reflect on all of the things that I have to be thankful for. I'm always grateful for the really major things - plenty of food to eat, my health, and a roof over my head, but sometimes we need to focus on the small things as well. Some days we need to be reminded that it's the little things that can make life so special......

  • The wonder of cell phones - being able to talk to my Mom today (4 hours away) just to catch up for a minute.
  • Thankful for people who are always prepared - when I went to make the spaghetti for tonight's dinner, I realized that we were out. Someone (Hubby) had forgotten to inform someone else (Me) when they used the last box, but I digress. Thankfully Hubby was able to stop at his parent's on the way home to grab a box - one of the 9 that they apparently had on hand. Thank you!
  • Peanut Butter & Co. Dark Chocolate Dreams Peanut Butter - (sorry, not sure why the link isn't working.) Yes I know that I have given up cut back on sugar, but this stuff is pure heaven. One spoonful can erase an entire day of horrible. 
  • A snuggling kitty....(or any pet). A couple of friends have lost pets this week, which makes me want to hug mine even more. Pets are family members, little people covered with fur and the most amazing friend you could ever have. If you have a pet, I hope you realize right now how lucky you are to have them. 
  •  Traditions.....Yes we'll eat turkey and stuffing and way too many desserts. But one of the things I'm most excited (and thankful) for about Thanksgiving, is that Hubby and I will also go out to cut down our Christmas tree that same day. We wander out onto his uncle's property, scouting out the perfect tree (Okay, some years they've been Charlie Brown trees, but we love them just the same) and by Saturday we'll have it up, ready to be decorated. Speaking of traditions - we also have to have National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation playing in the background while we trim the tree. We like to quote from it, and often:
    • Can I refill your eggnog for you? Get you something to eat? Drive you out to the middle of nowhere and leave you for dead?  
    • Don't throw me down, Clark. I'll try not to, Aunt Bethany... 
    • You surprised to see us, Clark?
      Oh, Eddie... If I woke up tomorrow with my head sewn to the carpet, I wouldn't be more surprised than I am now. 
      Oh and last but not least.......Days off - I'm thankful that the day after Thanksgiving I can sleep in, have coffee in bed, snuggle with a kitty and reflect on all that I have to be thankful for......

      What little things are you thankful for this week?

      ~ Adrienne

      Happy Thanksgiving!!!

      PS - Just an update to a previous blog - My MIL watched the cats while we were away this weekend and apparently one of my pumpkins found their way to the trash can. It's a sickness.....

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Tuesday Testimonials....

Blame it on your Jeans......

Recently a friend and I were discussing the horrors of trying to find jeans that fit properly.
"You should write a post about that!" she said. 
So Kristin - this is for you....

It just so happened that I was going that same day to look for a new pair of jeans. The majority of jeans that I have are either too baggy (yeah for weight loss) or are starting to get holes in them. I thought it was time to make the dreaded trek to try on new jeans, so I headed to my favorite clothing store, NY & Company. I've had good luck with their jeans in the past and I had some City Cash to spend. I grabbed 2 pairs of their Low Rise Boot Cut/Average. One pair was in the size I normally took, and one size was what I hoped I could take. I dove headfirst into the smaller pair and (Insert Happy Dance) they fit!! This is one of the things that I love about NY & Company. They don't shred your self esteem by telling you that the size you normally take won't work in their store. Unlike those smaller boutique stores (you know who you are) where I can't get my big toe into my normal size.

So, while I was dancing around the dressing room, basking in the joy of a smaller size, I overheard a conversation taking place between the woman in the room next to me and her husband, who was waiting outside.

Husband - "Well, what do you think?"
Wife - "Mmmmm they're too big."
Husband - "That was the size 4 right? Do you want me to grab you the size 2?"
Wife - "Yeah could you?"
A few moments later after wife has the size 2, she apparently emerges to show them off.

Husband - "They look good on you."
Wife - "Mmmm I think they may still be too big."
Husband - "But they look good on you."
Wife - "Yeah I just don't think they look right on me......"
Husband - "Well I think they look good on you, but do you want to try the zero?"

(I'm crying internally at the moment and fighting the urge to scream "they're a size 2!!! and he thinks you look good!" over the wall at her.)
      So I collect my items and take my size_____ jeans to the counter, a tiny bit deflated. But then I wonder, why do we women do this to ourselves??? I was so excited 5 minutes ago about being able to wear a smaller size jean, so why was it diminished the second I heard that the person next to me could wear an even smaller size?

     Why was it that the woman who could wear a size 2, was so caught up in obsessing over what she thought looked wrong, that she couldn't hear the obvious appreciation in her husband's voice when he looked at her? Maybe the problem isn't always with the jeans, but with how we view ourselves.

      So for today ladies, I ask that you treat yourself with more kindness when you look in the mirror. Smile at yourself, point out your assets and not what's wrong with your.....well you get the point. :)

And when your husband, boyfriend, friend, strangers, pay you a compliment - TAKE IT!!

~ Adrienne

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Lessons Learned......

Lessons Learned......

#1 - You Can Never Be Too Prepared.
During a recent trip to Target, I found myself in line behind a college student. He was from China and newly enrolled at UB (SUNY Buffalo). I overheard him telling the cashier that he was nervous about the news reports of possible snow in the next few days. (NOTE - For those of you not from the area, most of the time when there is a weather report predicting snow this early in the season, it means the Southtowns (areas at least 30 to 40 minutes away from where I live) will be getting the snow. The cashier and I knowingly smiled at each other, both aware that we were safe from said snow. The gentleman continued with his chatter as he unloaded his cart, explaining that he was stocking up on provisions should he become stuck in his home for a couple of days (again the chance of this is extremely rare.)
These were the "provisions" he was purchasing:
12 jars of spaghetti sauce
5 cans of New England clam chowder
2 cans of Hormel Chili
12 Pack of Mountain Dew
A snow shovel
I'm assuming the Mountain Dew was to keep him awake so he could shovel all that snow? And I did not have the heart to ask him if he had spaghetti at home to go with the 12 jars of sauce. I'm hoping he wasn't so frazzled by the impending snow that he had forgotten to throw some in his cart. Either way, clearly he was terrified at the thought of being outside his dorm room when the first snow flake fell, so he was doing all he could to prepare himself. That's really all you can do in life right? You make your preparations, do your homework and in the end hope for the best......and hopefully your Mountain Dew doesn't run out before the snow melts. :)

#2 - Just Because Something is on a Store Shelf,
Doesn't Mean You Can Buy It.

During that same trip to Target, I needed to purchase some toothpaste as Hubby and I had resorted to breaking into our travel sized tubes. I grabbed the brand that we are partial too, noticing that it came with coupons and a travel size bottle of mouthwash. I did not notice the fact that it was the only one like it on the shelf. When the cashier attempted to ring it up, nothing was found in the system which required her to ring for help. The manager who came, checked it out and on her return said to me:
"Yeah, I'm really sorry but this item is no longer in our inventory, I'm not sure how it ended up on the shelf, but honestly we can't even sell it to you."
And then she walked away......not even a "can I go get you a different one?" I told the cashier that this was a first. I've never been in a store where I was told that I couldn't buy something.....I love you Target, but that one really hurt.
PS I'm still using my travel sized toothpastes because of this..... :(

#3 People who live in NYC walk everywhere, because it's the only way to keep from gaining weight!

During my recent visit to NY, I threw the food restrictions out the window because....well.....hey I'm in NYC! The food choices were phenomenal. Just within a block from my friend's apartment were a Steakhouse, Thai Food, Pizza, and Italian. You name it and it was probably on that street. Our first night's dinner was Thai food and I had some of the best Pad Thai I've ever had (sorry I can't remember the name!). On Saturday we had yummy burgers at Shake Shack (it had been so long since I'd had one that I'd almost forgotten what they taste like!) We followed it up with hot chocolates made with Nutella. Yum.....
Thankfully we walked about 20 blocks of Central Park, all of 5th Avenue and a good portion of Soho that day. Dinner that night was AMAZING gourmet macaroni and cheese at Mac Bar (if you like Mac and cheese, you NEED to go here. ) You could have rolled me home when I was done. Instead we almost fell asleep on the subway home.....That night we did a lot of dancing and walking, which was followed up by amazing slices of pizza on the way home. Luckily,we walked to brunch on Sunday morning at Uptown Lounge and Restaurant. Between the mimosas and omelets, it was a good thing we walked both ways.
Needless to say, when I got home I seriously feared getting on the scale for my weekly weigh in. But I faced up to it (mainly because it was mocking me every time I walked into the room.) The verdict? About 1/2 a lb..... lost......WOW! Again, now I know why New Yorkers walk everywhere.

What did you learn this week???

~ Adrienne

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

You Have Nothing to Fear But Fear Itself........

I have a fear.....a rather strange one I suppose, but it's a fear none the less. I fear traveling by myself. Anything that involves me, a suitcase and going somewhere outside my neighborhood, can invoke some tremors. Even a road trip can make my heart race a little bit. So let's just say that me walking into the airport Friday afternoon to fly off to NYC, was slightly terrifying. 

I can't explain why I have this fear. If I could, I probably could find a way to limit or change it, but I have no explanation for it. I know it sounds crazy, believe me - I went to college for travel and tourism. I know how INSANE this fear is. Give me one other person to travel with (doesn't even have to be someone I know that well), and I will be completely fine for the trip, any trip, anywhere.....tell me I have to go it alone and I'll be breathing into a paper bag somewhere.
The reason for the trip was a very good one. A really good friend lives there and asked me to come visit, for about the 10th time. (I'm so sorry Amy for being such a scaredy cat!) I've always admired people who can fly off somewhere at a moment's notice to exotic places. One small bag, a passport and an adventurous spirit are all they need. (Yes Amy, I'm also talking about you.) So eventually, I said yes to her invite and I made my travel plans....and I sweated it out for a month. 

What if I miss my flight? What if the cab driver drops me off in the wrong place? What if the flight home is cancelled and I'm stranded at the airport....What if the flight has turbulence and no one is there to hold my hand??? Yes, again, I hear the insanity in what I was thinking, but I thought it anyway and probably much worse. So when the day came for the trip I was exhausted from all of my worrying but still worried all the way to the airport....all the way onto the plane.....through the cab ride (does he really know where he's taking me????) until I found myself at her door and thought......"Well that wasn't so bad."

The rest of the weekend was amazing. Perfect weather (Central Park!), great food, fun times and catching up with a wonderful friend. But my fear had almost won out over all of that. Was I immediately cured of my fear? Hell no! On the cab ride back to the airport the driver commented I may not make my flight home due to all the closed streets from the NYC marathon and his difficulty in finding a way to LaGuardia. I immediately thought "Crap! He is going to drop me off on a street corner in the middle of no where! Thankfully my worrying had paid off in the fact that I left for the airport 3 hours early. (Sometimes it comes in handy.)

But in the end I did face up to a fear (however irrational it may have been) and I am better for it. Guess I should start looking at my list of other fears....(Bungee jumping??.........I don't think so.)

What fears are holding you back from something amazing?