Category Archives: glass half full

Fast forward a year…

Hi guys,

Welp, it’s really been a year. Over a year, in fact. In that time, it’s entirely possible I’ve lost every. single. reader. I had. Hopefully a few of you have hung on to me in your RSS feeds, allowing my little link to wallow away to nothing, hardly even noticeable in your daily blog skimming. Perhaps, when you saw the link light up again, you forgot who I was — I know I do that fairly frequently with infrequent posters.

No blame if you’ve forgotten who I am. I’m just thankful you’ve kept me around all this time. It’s been a busy year to say the least. And at the same time, not all that busy at all. I spend most weeknights vegging out with my husband. (Last time I wrote, he was just a fiance.) Our weekends are often busy, but just as often not-so-busy.

Between planning a wedding, working the 9 to 5, and simply living life, you’d think I would have forgotten about this little corner of the Interwebs. Instead, I think about it nearly every day. Usually in that 25ish mile commute, as my hands grip the wheel but my mind wanders above the Interstate, I think about it over here. I think about how I genuinely miss getting everything out on “paper”. And even more so, how I miss interacting with the people who used to read my jumbled thoughts. I think about potential blog posts, rarely crafting an entire post in my head like I used to, but just thinking about wisps of posts that’ll likely never get written. A topic, a sentence, it all flows in and out again as easily as it comes to me.

And so I often think about coming back. “Next week,” I say. Or, “this weekend, I’ll do it.” For just about 386 days now. Today, it finally happened. And that’s about all I’ve got for now. No major revelations, but hoping that it’s not another 386 days and that the wisps keep coming and maybe starting knocking around enough to put to “paper”.

In the meantime, here’s a little peek at one of my favorite days of the past 386.

Husband and I, happy and newly married, in the park outside our first home (the tall white building behind us).

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Filed under blogging rocks!, DD (aka My Man), Detroit, glass half full, relationships, Wedding

Super Outfit (and Super Girl) returns!

I’m breaking the blog silence to discuss something VERY important.

It’s not Casey Anthony. It’s not even the Royals’ impending USA tour. Because according to recent media, those two things are THE! MOST! IMPORTANT! EVAR!

I disagree. What’s most important to me these days? What to wear for our engagement photos.

We’re getting them taken in a few weeks and heading to Michigan State University to have them done. Both DD and I went there, and while we didn’t know each other in college, I figured that since we’ll have plenty of wedding photos in Detroit, we might as well get some additional photos at one of my other favorite places.

But, as per usual, I’m pretty stupid when it comes to fashion.

I’m really hoping not to buy a new outfit, but I suppose that’s an option. I’d like to have two outfits — jeans and then a dressier option. But of course, the original options I thought I’d selected just don’t look as good as I thought they did. Or, maybe it’s just me. So…enter YOU!

Without further ado…here’s the first few options. I could scrap the dresses and go for white or black capris in addition to the jeans. I love the wash and fit of these jeans, so I’m definitely wearing them, I just need to decide on a top!

Also, yes, the photos are bad. And yes, I did crop half my face out. I’m trying to maintain some semblance of anonymity on this thing, however futile it may be.

Dresses!

Option 1, the shirt dress. I really liked the idea of this. I like the way it fits on top, but sometimes it can look weird on the bottom. I’ll likely pair it with red pumps (as shown in the second photo) and would also likely try to find a red belt to go with it and break up the dress a bit — right now it just has a black belt that came with it.

 

 

Option 2, the pink, cotton dress. This is a late add after I wore Option 1 today and decided I maybe wasn’t totally sold. This is one of my go-to dresses for summer weddings, but I don’t think it’d be too formal for our photos. It’s summery and comfortable, but also has some bunching/static cling issues because of the fabric. Might be annoying to worry about during the photo shoot.

The jeans!

Option 1. This was my main plan and I’d pair the outfit with black slingbacks. But, if I wear the pink dress, it’d be way too much pink. Also, yes, I’d wear a tank top underneath…I’m not in this photo.


Option 2. A late add when the whole “too much pink” came up. I really like this shirt and I think it flatters me, but I’d hoped to go with more vibrant colors, like pinks, blues or greens.

Option 3. Just for fun. Similar to option 2, but a darker color. Again, if I go with the shirt dress, I wouldn’t do this since it’d be too much black. Honestly, I don’t think I’ll do this one anyway. While I like the shirt, it has a bubble hem that I’ve never loved.


What do you think? Should I scrap the dresses and try capris? And what shirt should I wear?!?!

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), Detroit, glass half full, Super Outfit!, Wedding

So that happened

Last Saturday, after a nice little date night, DD and I walked home and stopped in Campus Martius Park. To my shock and awe, he got down on one knee, and showed me this:

Obviously (since it’s on my finger), I said yes.

For now, that’s about all I can muster up for a blog post. It’s been a long week, and has only been made longer by my sudden and immediate interest in planning a wedding. I’ve gone into full-on project manager mode and much to my friends’ surprise, already have a guest list and several potential venue choices, even though we’re not looking at getting married until April 2012.I keep telling DD that I’ll calm down once we’ve got the location and date locked in, but somehow I doubt that will be the case.

But, with all of that planning, there hasn’t been much time to sit and write a blog post. So, I’ll be back. In the meantime, gaze at the pretty bling. It’s what I like to do in my spare time. That, and think about how adult I suddenly feel.

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), Detroit, glass half full, relationships, Wedding

The one with diamonds…and smarm

A couple weeks ago, I made dinner for DD and I. As he was dishing up his pulled pork, he casually said

You know what we need to do next weekend?

I assumed he was talking about the massage gift certificates we needed to use, or the family we needed to see, or some other trivial task. Instead, he said:

We need to go ring shopping.

Without missing a beat (though, to be sure, my heart missed at least one), I replied that we could easily do that this weekend since we’d be out in the suburbs and could just stop at a jewelry store in the mall. See, while we’ve talked about marriage, it’s always been a “someday” conversation. In fact, just recently we’d had a rather massive miscommunication about the timeline I thought we were working against. So for him to be ready to look at rings…well…it was surprising.

That Saturday, after his nephew’s basketball game and before we went to dinner at my parents, we stopped by the mall and moseyed into a certain chain jewelry store that shall remain nameless. While I’m not a fan of buying engagement rings from chain jewelers, I figured it would be a good place to start browsing.

Apparently, we walked in the same day they were having THE BIGGEST SALE OF THE YEAR OMG!

Maybe it won’t be such a casual experience after all?

I explained that we were just looking to get an idea of what I liked. That we weren’t buying.

I began trying on rings and we began talking the 4Cs. I mentioned to her that I’m a princess cut, solitaire kinda girl, and would probably prefer a Tiffany Setting, or perhaps a Compass Setting. You know, something like this:

 

Or this:

 

I asked the saleswoman if she had either of these settings to try on. She didn’t. But of course, she said they could “do anything” so my setting of choice wouldn’t be a problem – and that if I didn’t like it, they had a 60 day, money-back guarantee. Which is great and all, but why would I buy something that I wasn’t totally sure about – money-back guarantee or not.

As we continued trying things on, another saleswoman joined us. It wouldn’t be until later that we’d realize we were moving up the chain of command. Even so, I felt like we were keeping things casual and were avoiding the hard sell. I mean, who buys an engagement ring in front of their bride-to-be anyway?

Then DD pointed to a ring off in the corner. The saleswoman took it out and quietly said “this one’s $17,000.” Until now, she hadn’t said the price of one.single.ring. I tried it on, politely ooooed and ahhhed and gave it back, just as the District Manager walked up.

Ding ding ding. Apparently, we’d hit the jackpot. I like to think that ring was attached to some secret alarm that, when picked up, tells the District Manager that there’s a live one on the hook.  

District Manager dismissed my notions of being surprised and gave the hard sell. TODAY ONLY! BEST PRICE! Blah. Blah. Finally, he just pulled DD off to the side to “give him some pricing”. As they talked, the saleswoman sized my finger, “just so I’d know it”.

And here’s why I’ve told you this very long story. For the sole purpose of what happened next.

District Manager (clad in a full business suit) and DD walked back toward us. As I watched them out of the corner of my eye, I saw District Manager spray something in the general direction of his face and then slide the offending item back in his pocket, all smooth-like

Dude. He totally sprayed Binaca in his mouth. BINACA!

Hey, I totally get wanting to be fresh and minty. But I thought breathe spray went out of style sometime in 1995. Aren’t there enough mints and gums on the market these days that you can keep your breathe fresh without looking like a completely smarmy salesman? Or at least could you wait until we leave the premises?

Somehow, we successfully made it out of their alive, with DD’s credit card untouched, and with only a little slime left on our clothes.

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), glass half full, rambling nature, relationships

Dear Santa

As I’ve gotten older, I’m not nearly into the gift part of Christmas that I was as a child. In fact, every November, the requests for my Christmas list start coming in and I have no idea what to ask for.

This year, I sat down and came up with a few odds and ends.

It wasn’t my favorite, but I still feel the need to have a full collection of SATC.

 

I’m not technically a vegetarian, but I don’t really enjoy cooking meat. This leaves me with lots of pasta in my diet, which, while yummy, isn’t nutritious. I’d like to learn some great meatless recipes that don’t involve all the carbs that pasta has.

 

My yoga pants are all pretty old. I could use some newer ones, and maybe a cropped pair or two. I’m a bit picky when it comes to this stuff, so in this case, a gift card would work too!

 

If my yoga pants are out of date, my sports bras are really out of date. These are a necessity for yoga. They cover more skin than a regular sports bra, but they don’t bulge out and block my breathing when I’m in an inversion.

 

OK. I know. I’m about 5 years behind the Ugg trend. The thing is, I live in Michigan. Where we have things like snow. And mud. And slush. So I need boots that can handle the snow, mud and slush without crumbling at the mere thought. For the longest time I’ve felt that while Uggs were fashionable, they weren’t practical. And I still think that. But, I also think that I deserve to be fashionable. My question to the Ugg owners out there: do they stand up to weather? Can you weatherproof them? And does that even work?!

I like to cook, but hate dealing with it after a long day at work. Hence, the slow cooker. And maybe a recipe book to get me started?

 

An infinity scarf. In any color in the rainbow.

 

And finally…

The thing on everyone’s list. The iPad. Truthfully, this isn’t actually on my list. I refuse to allow anyone to spend $500 on any one Christmas gift for me. But, I’ve got my sights on it and it’s possible I’ll take the plunge and get one soon. It’s the only thing that will make me consider reading an eBook.

 

All in all, not a bad list. Lots of things I need, a few things I want. We’ll see what Santa brings!

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Filed under glass half full, list mania, Y is for Yoga

reverb10: Party, party

Continuing on the occasional reverb10 train, today’s prompt was all about the parties of 2010:

What social gathering rocked your socks off in 2010? Describe the people, music, food, drink, clothes, shenanigans.

For me, the biggest party of the year — and thus the one that “rocked my socks off”, was DD’s birthday party.

He celebrated the big 3-0 in October, so I threw a shindig at my house. At first I was going to do appetizers and beer/wine, but at the last minute, I decided to embrace the fall season and serve up some spiced (and spiked) cider, two kinds of chili with all the fixin’s, and, of course, some appetizers. I outsourced most of the cooking to my mom and dad, which was a pretty smart idea.

It was great to have DD and his friends over to celebrate the start of another decade in his life. It’s a decade that will be about us and creating a family of our own. (Or at least I hope it will be!) It’s a decade that will probably bring a few trials and tribulations. But, it’s a decade that I’m looking forward to.

Aside from the obvious party choice, my favorite parties are those that involve family. As I looked over my calendar, I remembered the 4th of July barbecue that DD’s aunt hosted. I thought about the quiet Thanksgiving evening we spent with my parents. It’s the stuff like this that mean the most.

I’ve never been a big party gal. I love a glass of wine as much as the next girl, but staying out late and downing shot after shot just ain’t my style. So, it’s the quiet parties that I tend to enjoy most. The ones when I can connect with people I care about and relax. The ones where I don’t have to yell over the din of music. The ones where I don’t have to sidle up to a bar and stand for hours on end.

Plus, DD’s aunt makes some pretty awesome appetizers.

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Filed under blogging rocks!, DD (aka My Man), family values, glass half full, loft style living

reverb10: Community

Why not go balls to the wall with this whole blogging thing and do one of those awesome meme’s everyone keeps raving about?

Truth be told, I probably won’t follow through on every reverb post (I’m already 7 days late to the party anyway), but I think it will help me get back into regular posting when there’s a particularly good topic or I don’t have anything more exciting to share.

So, Day 7. Community.

Where have you discovered community, online or otherwise, in 2010? What community would you like to join, create or more deeply connect with in 2011?

2010 (and part of 2009 while we’re at it) has allowed me to explore the community where I lay my head. Detroit. Downtown to be specific, but most importantly, the city proper. I’m proud to say my driver’s license has boasted a Detroit address for a year and a half now.

One of the main reasons I moved into the city was to be closer to DD and a community of people like me. For those of you who only hear about Detroit from national news stories, you may be surprised to find out that a young, white, single, successful woman would move into the city to find a like-minded community, but it’s true.

I have close friends just two blocks away from me. I can see my gym from my apartment window. I walk to work and some of my favorite restaurants and bars. A short bike ride gets me to some fabulous parks, grocery stores, and boutiques. I may pass a few abandoned buildings on my way, but damn if it ain’t the best community I’ve lived in.

Last week, I went to the grand opening of a pop up shop. It’s open just for the holidays and it offers a variety of classy housewares and other fun decor. I made sure to bring a friend just in case I didn’t know anyone at the party, but I don’t know why I was so worried. Upon walking in, I saw no less than three other friends, all Detroiters, all interested in supporting a local business and checking out the scene on a random Thursday night.

It’s just one of many examples of the community Detroit gives me. During the cold months, my neighbors and I schedule game nights and dinners out. In the summer, we take walks and go for bike rides. It’s like the neighborhood I lived in as a kid, but with booze and parent-free.

This community of mine is probably short lived. It’s great for singles and newlyweds, and even folks with young kids. But the desire for a house and a yard and good schools for our children will probably have many of us headed for the suburbs at some point. All I can hope for is that if and when I do settle in the suburbs, I’m able to find a neighborhood that offers the same community I feel every day in Detroit.

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), Detroit, glass half full, loft style living

On Detroit 1-8-7

Detroit 1-8-7 premiered on Tuesday (10 p.m., on ABC). Did you watch it? Did you even know about it?

It’s been a pretty big deal ’round these parts. All kinds of people saying it’s going to destroy our image. It’s only going to position us as the murder capital of the nation, etc. etc.

And then there’s those of us who don’t think the show will be the end of us. After all, our image is already in the crapper. People already think of us as the place where you better bring heat. What can a measly hour of TV do to change or reaffirm that?

Truth is, a TV show ain’t gonna save us — or ruin us. At least, that’s what I hoped would be the case.

After the first episode, I *think* I’m right.

The show opened with a bit of funk combined with gritty shots of the city. From the shiny downtown to the downtrodden homes, they are all real shots of the city. Even down to the street signs, this IS Detroit. Now, there’s some controversy that some of the scenes were shot in Atlanta, but I’ve heard the show’s producers say that that was for the pilot only and all future episodes will be shot in the city.

Personally, I only noticed a couple hiccups that didn’t look like Detroit. As I’m sure you can imagine, Detroit has its own unique look. The show is smart to take up residence here and take advantage of all of the amazing locations that really can’t be found anywhere else.

Bottom line? I’m a fan so far.

I want you to watch this show. I want you to see my city and I want you to love it — abandoned buildings and grit and all. Because I do.

But, I want you to watch it with a caveat. It’s a caveat that anyone with common sense should be able to recognize, but a caveat that the show’s naysayers thought people wouldn’t be able handle.

It’s this: Just because this is a show about homicide, doesn’t mean homicide is the only thing that happens in Detroit.

Just like Law & Order, NYPD Blue, or any of the plethora of cop shows that take place in NYC, it’s just a backdrop, not the norm. Do you stop visiting New York just because Benson & Stabler solved a rape case on last week’s SVU? Sure, there’s crime in New York, but there’s also high fashion, power, and the elite. Hence, shows like Sex and the City and Gossip Girl.

In fact, I’d venture to say that Detroit 1-8-7 has the potential to serve Detroit like Sex and the City served New York — making the city an extra and equally important character. That is, if they get the details right. It’s “pop”, not “soda” in these parts.

So, check out Detroit 1-8-7 and think of it like this. It’s an interesting cop show, with a fabulous backdrop: The D.

And if you still watch it and think about how sad Detroit is, remember this. I live in a place that looks like this. And I have a view that looks like this. And I live squarely within the city limits.

So there, naysayers. It may not all be roses, but it’s not all homicides, either.

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), Detroit, glass half full, loft style living

House Hunting

The thought of buying a home has always scared me.

The idea of being settled and committed to any one place for any length of time isn’t something I typically get behind. In the three years DD and I have been dating, I’ve moved twice. And then there was the one time before that. And then the nine times in college (not counting any time I moved home).

I’m someone who needs to change things up.

But lately, I find myself obsessed with homes. With thinking about where DD and I might go when we’re married. Would we buy in Detroit and truly commit to the city and all that comes with it? Would we head to the old money suburb just outside the city limits? Or would we choose the trendy suburb with the yuppie downtown? Or what about the far-reaching new money suburb full of McMansions?

I drive through each of these neighborhoods on a weekly basis. And as I cruise the tree lined streets, I watch for For Sale signs and mentally nix the homes I don’t like. Back at home, my reader has become increasingly home/design inspired.

DD and I aren’t anywhere near making a decision about a home and I don’t plan to make any purchases on my own. And I really do love my loft. But, I know it’s temporary and that sooner, rather than later, I’ll be in need of something more permanent. As I see cute rooms and paint colors and built-in bookshelves in my reader, it just gets me a bit more excited about the prospect.

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), Detroit, glass half full, Hmm, loft style living, relationships

How I spent my summer vacation: The birthday

As a final nail in the recap posts, I figured I’d touch on my birthday, way back in June.

It passed earlier this summer without much fanfare. On the Monday before, I found myself at a Marine’s funeral. Then came the work meetings and the book club and the catch up and the general things that life brings.

When the weekend arrived, it didn’t seem to warrant much celebration. Frankly, after two weekends of dealing with death and family, we probably would have preferred to collapse in bed and sleep for a weekend. But, DD and I had long before booked a little jaunt to Windsor, Ontario, for dinner.

I can practically see Canada from my apartment, but I hadn’t been since I was 19 and it was the only place I could legally drink. So, I was excited to go for dinner and we found a great little place in Little Italy. DD got me a new and much improved yoga mat and other gear. Low-key, but just what we  both needed to get back into the swing of life.

What IS noteworthy is that it was the last birthday of my 20s. The next time June 13 comes around, I’ll be celebrating the big 3-0. While I’m not one to be all whoa is me about the impending end of my 20s, I am one to give it pause.

After a brief conversation with DD last spring, I’m relatively confident I’ll be engaged by the time I’m 30. So there’s that.

More recently, I’ve been thinking that the next decade may mean lots of changes. Changes in career. Changes in my status as a non-mother. Maybe even health changes. I can’t help but think that all of these things are inevitable. Isn’t that the way life works?

My 20s were pretty stable. The love life was rocky, but I found my compliment. The career was a rock. Through thick and thin, I’ve been there since I graduated college. Aside from a kidney transplant, the health was pretty stable as well.

It was good. But I’m probably due for something different. Will my career demand a new direction? Will my health take a turn? These transplanted kidneys don’t last forever, you know.

I think I’m ready for a new decade and all the changes that come with it. There may be a few I’m a bit terrified of — hello, motherhood! hello, second transplant! — but overall, I’m excited. (Except for that second transplant. That can hold off forever if I have my way.)

30 has a good ring to it. Now, let’s just see if I’m wearing a ring when it comes along!

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Filed under DD (aka My Man), decisions, foodie, glass half full, loft style living, rambling nature, relationships, transplant, Y is for Yoga