Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Pour Your Heart Out: Always 4, Always Together

Another Wednesday, another Pour Your Heart Out with Shell.

I am the oldest of my parents four children.

I have two sisters, who are twins.

And I have a brother.

And the four of us have always had pretty good relationships. And this year, like I have posted before, they all graduated, one way or the other.

E & K graduated from college, and A from high school.

It's a time of lots of change in our family. Lots of moving on, moving out and moving away. Lots of stress, tests, new friends, new environments, new area codes, new addresses, new directions.

Not that, you know, people are moving far away. But it seems that the time we have to spend together is getting shorter and shorter.

But still. It makes me wish that for a longer amount of time, I cherished being in my parents house, and being with my family. Not that I didn't. Just that I did more often. Before I moved, and before I went to college. And while everyone was still in the same place.

So, to my sibs, I am giving you a big huge hug. And I am wishing each of you nothing but the best and the brightest of tomorrows. And I want you all to know, that no matter, what, we will always have the 4 of us.

Even if you don't want to think it's true.

At A's Senior Night game at AQ. It was so cold and rainy. But we were together shivering. Well, A was playing, but still. You get the point.

At my College graduation. Obviously, I'm not in this picture, because well.... I was graduating.

Out with my sissies one night back in Rochester. This is before A came to pick us up, because well... K couldn't drive. A managed to win the never ending game of darts though, so either way, it was a win.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Meet, Re-Greet, and a Pre-Weekend Update

So, tonight I get to go to dinner with a fun fabulous sprinkle-tastic friend that I haven't seen in ages. We are getting sushi, I am seeing her new apartment. We will gossip, and giggle, and take pictures, and it will be epic.

Yes. I just used EPIC in a sentence. Impressed? Again, I say yes.

And, over 4th of July? I might get to see my Twinner from high school. I haven't seen her since our 5 year reunion over Christmas, and well... she lives about 2 hours away, and it's just about time that we made a special fabulous trip to see eachother. And what better way or time, than on a 3 day weekend?

If you're thinking there isn't one, you would be correct!

Also, this weekend? Yea. I'm going to a NASCAR race.

What. the. heck. do. people. do. at. NASCAR. races?!?!?! I'm so confused. I never "got" NASCAR. Oh well, it's a day to hang out and be with friends, I guess? And come back to work on Monday without any hearing capabilities.









This truly is epic. Well, because, we haven't "seen" eachother since she left. And her life has been totally bananas since moving back to TX, what with getting married, and settling into her new apartment and married life.

So this is thrilling. And super exciting. And makes me happy. Yay.

All in all, it's going to be a great weekend I do believe.

Oh, and hey. Only 16 more days til JM and I are in San Diego. On the first!!! vacation ever we will take together, just us since we started dating over 2 years ago. Yea. I'm more excited than well, say the Easter Bunny on Christmas morning.

Whatever, you get it.

Expect pictures. Actually, expect lots of pictures. I know we (and by we, I mean I) have been totally sucking on the uploading of the photos. Maybe that'll be a project for tonight... But hey, no promises k?

xoxo *W

PS. A Friday Flip-Off cuz I haven't done one in a while...
To the Med student who has made my life a living miserable painful want-to-poke-my-eyes-out-with-a-rusty-fork type of week? Flip-off. I am done bending over backwards every time you decide you can "fit me in," and make me over 30 minutes late to leave work on Tuesday, which I may not get paid for. Flip. Off. Please and ThANK YOUU

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

A taste of Rochester: The Trash Plate Edition

This is Jake. He is my Cousin Once Removed aka Snugs aka Veagabomb. (No joke, that's what some of his friends call him. Awesome nickname? I think YES) And he is sitting with a trash/garbage plate.

And it is glorious.

Now, for all those readers who aren't from upstate/western NY and don't know what a trash plate is, here's the breakdown:

1: Styrofoam plate
1/2 home fries (or french fries depending on where you are)
1/2 macaroni salad
2 cheeseburger patties
Chopped Onions
andddd the Secret HotSauce
As much ketchup as you would like. I tend to use.... a lot. As can be seen by the "1/2 plate" aka less one burger patty that Jake "Veagabomb" and I split while I was at home.

And then... enjoy.

Now, because this is considered the "drunk" food of Rochester, because well, there aren't many people who willingly put this into their bodies while they are sober, you have to understand.

It's also not something you eat every day. Because seriously....
Do a google search. You'll see why. It's the amount of calories for almost 2 full days. And we'll just leave it at that.

Upon ingesting the garbage/trash plate in a state that is reached after alcohol consumption...


There. I said it. It is the cure-all for hangovers/enough calories and grease to put in you after a night out on the town.

And it is the one thing that those people who move away from Rochester, go back to have. Even if it is fabulously unhealthy. What's the treadmill for, people!?

Well.... that and Abbott's ice cream. But that post, my friends, is for another day. One in which I will tell you all things that are delicious about Chocolate. Almond. Soft Serve.

PS. trying to be a pescatarian at my brother's graduation party? Yea, it didn't work. I'm back on the bandwagon, but still, there was too much chicken being served for every meal. And the deal is that while changing your personal diet choices, you don't become a burden to those around you. Or make them feel guilty.

So I ate chicken.

And.... some pulled pork. Because my mom makes the most bomb pulled pork ever. Well, I guess I do, because I sat pulling it for an hour pre-party ;) oh well, whatever, it was delicious!

Pour Your Heart Out: Get up and Live

Every time I go to write a Pour Your Heart Out post with Shell I go from thinking I should write about my family, or my job, or what's going on in my life. Something interesting, something that people will like to hear or read about. And then I start writing, and sometimes it meshes, and sometimes it doesn't. This is kind of rambly. Bare with me.

or don't, but hey, your choice! :)

Over the past couple of days, I have, as I wrote last week, spent a lot of time in Rochester. I have tan lines because I sat at the pool (!!!!!) and it's great. But I also came to the realization.

As I get older I have come to realize how much my family can mean to me. Whether it's hearing the same stories from Grandpa "Crunchy" and trying to correct his political incorrectness (which I have given up on, unless it's really bothersome, because seriously, at 80 I am just not going to be able to influence him at this point) or going to pick up Gramps and visiting all of my now "Over 90 club" favorites at his retirement facility, 2 of which were in his wedding party almost 70 years ago, or meeting my cousin's son for the first time (even though he's 18 months old), or giving up the fight while getting thrown in the pool, it was a great way to spend 5 days. It was a much needed reminder of how much going back and seeing my family can do for me mentally and physically. I am refreshed (post pool toss of course) and I'm ready to go.

Especially because I found out that one of my aunt's actually reads my blog! And thinks I'm good at this whole "writing" thing. It was nice to hear, and it was kind of surprising to find out that she reads this, but hey, I'm all about people reading and following and commenting, so what the heck, I'll take it :)

So thanks, to my family, to my friends, to my blogging friends for making the past 6.5 months something fun, and opening up a creative and fun aspect of my life. This isn't like my other PYHO posts, but I thought I needed it today.

Time to go and apply some more after sun lotion to keep this tan a bit longer.... ahhh, summer.

PS. I started training for my 5K in September. Couch to 5K program. I am seriously out of shape, but if I can't devote 25 minutes 3 times a week to this, I have massive problems.

Cuz seriously, I just spent 25 minutes writing and editing this. While sitting. And thinking about how it's been 6 months in this year and this is the first time I actually took a step towards accomplishing one of my new years resolutions. It's no half marathon, but a 5k is still a good step.


Oh, and ps go check out Tessica, who has this AWESOME feature on her blog called 26 before 26 because seriously, it's great, and well... almost like a bucket list of things to do before a certain point in your life... In her case, before the age of 26. Who doesn't like a fun "Life List"?! It reminds you to get up and LIVE. Which is the most important anyways.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Over the river and through...

well, you know the rest.

I am going back to Rochester tomorrow for a WHOPPING 5 whole days!! I am so excited to be back there, have more than 27 hours off, and to celebrate a whole lot of things.

On the agenda for celebrations:
My (baby) brother's high school graduation (GAH!!!! I feel SO old, this is not ok.) When I graduated from high school, and realized that he wouldn't graduate until 2010, I said, "Wow, self, that is super far away." And now it's here. And while there were times that he didn't think he would make it through (thank you, high school bullsh*t, you truly are over-rated) he did it, and I am so excited to witness the next part of his journey. With a soccer ball at his feet of course! (And his birthday, but seriously, there is a lot of celebrating going on at a graduation party. Don't worry Andrew, there are presents for both, I promise! :))

My Grandpa "Crunchy"s 80th birthday. Sure to be a great time surrounded by the entire Clark side of the family, this part of the weekend will be fun, celebratory and a time to catch up and relax around eachother.

My Mom's big FIVE-OH birthday. Love you, Mom! Sorry I couldn't be there on Sunday, but I promise, there will be great hugs, smiles, pictures and happiness. I am so lucky to have such a great mother who is such a great example as to what love and strength are.

My sister's birthdays (because I didn't make it home for those either, yikes, I am sucking as a big sis) Because even though turning 22 is totally lame, everyone needs to celebrate the one-year-anniversary-of-turning-21. And what better way to do it than with a lovely raspberry martini by the pool? And a pedicure and manicure too if we can squeeze it in!

Father's Day with my Dad, Gramps, and Grandpa. All. In. The. Same. Place. Totally crazy, but I am so happy to be home for a Father's Day where everyone is together. Yay!

And, with any trip back to Rochester, it will be full of trips to Wegmans, hopefully a trash plate (pictures to come, I promise. Seriously. So. Good. And soooo fabulously unhealthy!) lots of pictures, changing weather every 3 minutes, getting thrown into a pool once, twice, and let's be serious, probably 5 times, bon-fires, laughing, crying and lots of time together with those I love.

And by the time Monday comes around, may be a little tired of.

Ha. Ha. Ha.

You can expect some blog picture updates. I don't promise an update til I get back, but hey, you never know. ;)

And, while you're here, be sure to check out my fun friends that are new to the bloggy world, K and B. Show them some comment love, and be sure to drop me one too!

PS. New favorite flavor of coffee from DD: Toasted Almond. Seriously, do it. This is not something you regret.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

I told ya I was going to be crafty!

So, I got this idea from Love, Actually, a blog I have been following for a while.

There are all these super cute ideas as to how to "spice up" or "keep the love alive" in your relationship.

It's cute.

And totally crafty.

And like I said yesterday, DUH, I was going to be crafty last night.

So, I went to Michael's to try to get crafty supplies. And they may not have had the tiles that I wanted, but they had these super cute little wooden mats, of sorts, that I decided would work just fine.

And then....

I spent 35 minutes trying to find magnets. Seriously. Shouldn't they be labelled in the aisles?! Seriously. Because, they're not.

Anyways, so this is the finished product. Don't mind the really awful picture quality. It's from my phone, and lets all be serious for a minute, it doesn't take iPhone quality photos. But it'll do, so you have to deal :) Maybe tonight when I get home I'll actually take a better picture. Who knows. Either way, this was a super fun, super easy craft. And who doesn't like personalized magnets???

No one. That's right.

((note that some of these (read: one) are mounted on a piece of scrap-booking paper, and some are just the picture on the wooden block thingy. My technical skills are to be rivaled right now, I know.))

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Pour Your Heart Out: One day at a time

I'm linking up with Shell for a Wednesday Pour Your Heart Out. Check out her site, and all the other bloggers doing the same thing

It's been a rough year.

Everyone around here can kind of feel the struggle, and those in my physical life can see it. I have mentioned it to my parents, and my sisters. I have talked with some of my friends. I've sort of written it here.

And last night, I told JM everything.

That I don't like the person I have become. That I feel empty.

That I'm scared.

That I'm afraid that I'm stuck and afraid that I'm never going to get out of this place.

It is probably the scariest thing to let someone else in to the world that you are experiencing. It's dark sometimes, and it's frightening and it's emotional.

And as my mom can certainly tell you, I am not one for super big emotions. I was a "bottler" when I was a kid. Which is fine, but it probably isn't healthy as an adult.

Because you end up like I was last night. And seriously, no one likes that. But seriously, sometimes that's all you have left.

But JM talked, and listened. And he held me while I cried. He told me he could see that I was hurting, but he didn't know what to say at first. And he supported me. He offered help and assistance. He told me we were "in it together, and we'll figure it out....An easy ride is not what I signed up for."

I never realized how much a job could drain you. How much it could steal from you. How much it could change you: positive or negative.

But I do now, and I refuse to ever feel like this again.

So blog friends, today is a new day. Today is the day that I am reclaiming a lot of me that was lost. I don't promise that I'm going to be all sunshine and happiness, but I think the writer's block might be over. I might actually post more than once a week.


I'm going to make this work. I'm making a paper chain countdown til my last day at AMC. And every link is going to be something great.

Heck, these posts might get named with the countdown til the end of my job. Either way, it's time to focus on the positive.

So, today, that's what I'm going to try to do. Even though it's rainy and gross (seriously with this weather today though?!).

And, I'm going to make some arts and crafts tonight. Because I can, and because it's therapeutic, and because well... I have the time to take for myself.

Because even though I can't move up my end date (GAHHHHH!! shaking fist at stupid emails I got this morning) I can create a wall that blocks me from continuing to feel like I'm sad.

Like I can't be myself.

Like smiling is actually hard sometimes.

Because that's not me, and I am getting back to that other person.

The person I want to be, and the person I deserve to be. And, to be giving to others.

One day at a time, friends.
One day at a time.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Thirsty Thursday and a lovely Limoncello Cocktail

So, I have clearly not been posting on Thursdays for my "Thirsty Thursday Cocktail of the Weekend."

That changes today my friends.

Today in Albany, Alive at 5 kicks off. This is a summer music celebration that continues into a block party on Thursday afternoons, at, you guessed it! 5 PM.

PLUS, this weekend is also the DaveMatthewsBand concert up at Saratoga Performing Arts Center, or SPAC. DMB comes to SPAC for 2 nights every year (except next year, because they're taking a 1 year hiatus from touring. Tear.) and it is a HUGE highlight of the summer. It's a weekend full of BBQing, drinking, playing games, hanging with friends, listening to music, and just joining in with the craziness that is the DMB experience.

((Side note: Last year was my first DMB weekend experience. It was great. So much fun, and so many laughs. Great show, and great afternoons spent in the sun with friends. Ahhhh, DMB weekend.))

Anyways, this weekend, is a great weekend to try this deliciouscocktail. The limoncello gives it a kick, but it's still light and refreshing. It's a perfect blend of summer! For those who don't like to drink martinis, you can also turn this frosty lemon martini into a cocktail, by pouring the following ingredients over ice, and topping it off with seltzer/club soda. It lightens it up, blends the flavors a bit more, and keeps everything much colder. And on a hot summer day, who doesn't need a refreshing cold cocktail?

Frosty Lemon Martini
3 oz. citrus vodka
1 oz. limoncello
1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
Sugar and lemon wheel for garnish
Rim a chilled cocktail glass with sugar and set aside. Combine vodka, limoncello and lemon juice in a cocktail shaker with ice, and shake briskly to chill. Strain into the prepared glass, and garnish with a lemon wheel.
Hope you enjoy this one, and let me know any changes you made, or any other limoncello recipes you may have!
Don't worry. If you don't try it, I don't judge. I promise.
Well. Ok, only a little bit. But not for long, that much I can (almost) promise.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Pour Your Heart Out: A love for the ages

Shell, over at Things I can't Say, has a great feature on Wednesday's called "Pour Your Heart Out." This is my 3rd post, and again, I am so happy to be part of it.

For the past couple of days, I have been truly missing my Gram. So, this is for her and my Gramps, and the love that they share together.

My Dad's parents, my Gram and Gramps were married for over 65 years. They were together for almost 71. They met back in the 1930s, and while my grandmother was dating someone else, my grandfather fell in love with her.

It is really a cute story, one which I need to tape record and then save forever.

They were apart for almost 5 years while he was in the Service back in WWII. 5 years. And people these days can't handle 5 days. Anyways, that's not really the point.

My Gramps has loved my Gram since the day he met her. He held her hand every chance he got, told her he loved her at every moment. They never doubted eachother. They loved with a passion and a fury that is to be rivaled in the fairy tales. I will forever remember my Grandma holding his hand, while laying in her hospital bed close to her death, saying "Watch this one Whitney, I still got it!" And pulling his HUGE sleeper chair closer to her, remarking "Much better, you were so far away, hon."

I have found letters that they wrote to eachother while Gramps was gone. I am much like my Gram when she was in her 20s, I have come to realize. The sarcastic remarks, the funny quips, and the absolutely hysterical moments of clarity when seeing someone else's character. They are all in her letters to my Gramps, which he has saved for almost 60 years.

Gram, when she was (I think) 25

Gram will have been gone for 3 years this July. It seems almost impossible to think and comprehend that it has been so long. 3 years feels like a lifetime ago.

Relationships in the 20s, and 30s seem to be of historical nature. Marriages lasting well into 60 years. The trust and companionship and pure support that existed. Yes, this is me in rose colored glasses, looking at my grandparents because I am sure that not every single relationship was the same as theirs. They have truly defined "soul mate" in my eyes. There is not one memory that I have of my grandparents where they are without eachother, without their fingers entertwined, without them by eachothers side.

It is a love to be rivaled and strived for. It is a type of love that I hope that I have not only to give, but to also receive.

I miss being able to see that with them. And I am so, so thankful that I have some of these letters to show me that although times get tough, you can push through and make it. You can overcome the obstacles. You can be personally successful and still have someone in your life that loves and supports and is there for you through good and bad. I am so thankful that I have something to compare my life and my love to. Because no one should have anything less than the passion and true love that can endure for over 70 years. Their story is/was hard. But they endured. They are the real life fairy-tale that I have forever been searching for.