I. Hate. I-270. Traffic.

The title should really say it all.

This morning my coworker and I sat in traffic for an HOUR AND A HALF. Our normal commute time tops out at 40 minutes at the most usually, it about 30 minutes. But today was a perfect storm of events. No pun intended.

First of all, if ANYTHING hits the windshield of a DMV driver, they slam on their brakes as if to convey terror. “OH MY GOD SOMETHING IS ON MY WINDSHIELD, I NEED TO SLOW DOWN OR STOP ON THE HIGHWAY EVEN THOUGH MY LIFE IS IN NO WAY AT RISK AT THE MOMENT.” …that seems to be the thought process in my eyes.

Understanding this, I was ready to go by 8:00 am this morning because there was a drizzle. A DRIZZLE. So I text my coworker to say im ready. No usually quick response. I text again, “You ready?” Nothing. I called, and she asked if i got her text messages, To which I replied no…apparently she was outside. After she got my first text she rushed to get to my door. I walked out the door at 8:15 am to get into her car, and i got all 4 of her text messages at 8:22 am. So she was running behind this morning. Which USUALLY wouldn’t be a big deal at all!!!! But God had it out for us this morning.

We get onto the highway, and its jammed. completely. Again, not out of the ordinary, but it loosens up quickly. Not this morning. I put the address into Waze and it said we’d be at work by 9:10 am. I text my boss about my morning, and she was stuck in traffic as well.

Well, time goes on. We inch on. Literally, Inch. We didn’t hit over 10 miles an hour till the end of your commute. 7 mph was out average. SEVEN. I kept watching the arrival time estimator in Waze going higher and higher…I was getting nervous.

The last job I had, I was let go because I was a few minutes behind 3 days in a row. Today I was going to be almost 40 minutes late. I was petrified!!

We finally pull into work and I get out, get to my desk and sign in. 9:38 A.M.

Never in my life have I ever had such a tremendously horrible commute.

1 hour, 20 minutes to go 15.1 MILES.

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Weight Woes

Just had my weekly Weight Watchers weigh in…and i’m peeved.

I weighed myself yesterday and I was 215.8. This afternoon…218.8. EXCUSE ME?!?!?!??

I’m going to start weighing myself every morning so that I can get a better idea of exactly what my trend is. This weekend was really trying for me, and I tried to do really well on the plan, but I guess it wasn’t as good as I thought.

It’s really discouraging to see higher numbers on the scale.

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The Fat Lady Sings

This past weekend was really hard.

I got off work at 1:30, ran an errand and then hit the road around 2 to go to Richmond. Traffic was miserable. I got to Richmond around 5. Dad pulled up, and he and I left in the Budget rental truck at 5:45 to go to Bennettsville, SC. We finally pulled up in front of my Grammie’s house at about 11pm.

We got in, figured out sleeping arraignments, and I crashed pretty early. I slept in Grammie’s bedroom, I hadn’t slept in that room since I was younger.  My mom and sister stayed up talking to my Uncle William and Cousin Rob til about 2 am. I was just too tired to function at that point.

Mama shook me out at 8am, later than I had expected…and we got to work. Moving out furniture we wanted to keep, packing family odds and ends, and throwing away trash. It was a very hard thing to do. I packed an entire china set, that no one wants currently, but my mama is insisting she’s going to make one of my cousin’s bride’s very happy some day. I’m an extremely sentimental person…and it was hard not to feel selfish when there were things that were divided up.

What makes this even harder, is that i still live in an apartment. I don’t really have space for furniture right now! There are several items that I have that I can store, like books and accessories. I would have loved to have had space to have everything..but that’s just not possible. It’s hard. Christmas and birthdays are going to be hard this year.

I know I’ve blogged about this a lot recently…it’s been weighing on me. I got some closure this weekend, but it still doesn’t feel real. I’m not sure if it ever will. I’m trying to pull myself out of this rut, but it’s hard, y’all.

Pulling away from that house is the hardest thing I have ever had to do. It really hurt.

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Lean On Me…Please?

One of my dear friends was dumped by her boyfriend yesterday. She hadn’t been dating him long, but she falls hard and fast and throws herself in completely when she cares about someone or something. Both a great thing..and not so great, sometimes.

Either way, I managed to get it out of her that he was the only one that had told her she was beautiful and that she was beautiful inside and out. She had never felt like that and I realized that she was relying on guys to make her feel that she’s wonderful. She didn’t think that of herself!

This pulled at my heart a bit. I love this girl to death, and to hear her be so negative about herself pained me. I tried to not sound preachy, but to tell her that she needs to love herself first before she lets anyone else love her. She needs to realize what an amazing human being she really is, yes, inside and out. She is a fiercely dedicated friend, daughter, and sister. When she finds something she cares about, she throws herself into it…a step short of obsession 😉 I think this is an admirable and wonderful trait to have! When she cares…she REALLY cares!

I tried my hardest via text message to tell her she should feel that way about herself. whether its a good hair day, or a messy bun day; sweats or formal wear; bloated or gym-fresh. She is beautiful. I swear, if I could have reached through that phone, I would have shaken her!! Anything to get her to realize what a unique and wonderful person she really is.

she doesn’t need a man to tell her that. she doesn’t need ANYONE to tell her that. NO WOMAN needs that!! You are your most beautiful self, always. Don’t ever let anyone try to tell you different. Those are the people you don’t need in your life.

Self-Esteem is a hard thing to come by for some people. I know I struggled with it all through middle and high and college. It really took me being in a few bad relationships to realize, you know what? I’m beautiful. I’m a catch! I’m smart and funny and witty. I care fiercely about my friends and family. I’m lucky that i’m dating one of my best guy friends from college who sees this the same way I do and supports me in whatever I do.

I wish that for all of my girlfriends. A guy who cares about you as much as he cares about himself. Who supports you emotionally. Who roots you on when you take something on. That guy comes in all shapes, sizes, colors, creeds…don’t discount someone because you have this IDEAL image in your head of what Prince Charming is. There might be a guy right under your nose that is ga-ga for you, but you don’t give the time of day or have friend-zoned based on something that might be a little shallow. Let the tide fall back and see how many beautiful fish are waiting for you. (Was that too cheesy or bad? haha!)

Moral of this post: Love your self. Don’t let anyone else dictate how you feel about yourself.

xo,

A

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No Better Place Than Here, No Better Time Than NOW

So, I’ve posted about weight loss before, and about my workouts and playlists. I haven’t seen much of a change. Mostly because I got lazy and didn’t go as often as I needed to go. So I’ve hit my refresh button.

A few weeks ago, my office announced that they would be trying to get a 14 week in office Weight Watchers program together. We managed to scrape together the 15 people minimum that we needed to get the ball rolling! I’m in my second week and am down 2.6 lbs.

I am also expecting a package today from Beach Body that should have my Cize workout DVDs and my first month of Shakeology. I’m trying to turn this thing around.

During WW meetings, we’ve been asked “What is your Why?” Why are you losing weight. I guess I’ll use this format to be honest with myself and my loved ones about why.

MY why is me. It’s because I want to be fit.
I want to be healthy.
I want to be a role model.
I want to be able to have children and be healthy before and after and birth a healthy child.
I’m doing it so that Stephen and I can have a future together.
I’m doing it so that I don’t lose my breath at the top of a staircase.
I’m doing it so that I don’t look like a pig when we eat out.
I’m doing it to stop everyone who has judged me behind my back.
I don’t want to have to have joint replacements before I’m old.
I don’t want Diabetes or Heart Disease.
I don’t want to hear my mother looking at old pictures of me saying how beautiful I WAS.

I’m doing it because I AM beautiful, I am capable, I am ready, I want and need this.

And…well…I want to wear a fucking bikini and feel like a hot piece of shit again. There. I said it.

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Closure? I guess we’ll see…

I’ve cried, but I still don’t feel like I have closure.

I’m going to her house this weekend to help Mama and Daddy finish cleaning out the house. It might finally hit me then. The empty house. The lack of her singing, her laugh, the smell of her cooking.

I don’t know if i’m ready to let go.

I mean, I was there for the funeral and her graveside service. I cried hard. But I’ve been trying so hard to be strength for my Mama, because I cant fathom how she feels. I need my turn.

This might be a very ugly weekend. Lord, grant me strength and someone give me wine.

EDITH FURMAN

BENNETTSVILLE – Edith Herron Pettigrew Furman passed away on May 20th, 2015, at home after a brief illness.

She was born in Starr on August 30, 1926, the daughter of the late Geroge C. and Edna H. Pettigrew. After growing up in Starr, Mrs. Furman moved to Bennettsville, where she met her husband of over 40 years, the late Haywood G. Furman.

Shew was an active participant in the community and a devoted member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.

Mrs. Furman is survived by her three children, Nell Furman Hirsch (Donald), Edie Furman Oswald (Stephen), and William Haywood Furman (Pam); her grandchildren, Alexander, David and Edward Hirsch; Alexa, Lydia and Caroline Oswald; and McColl and Robert Furman; as well as her sister, Martha Pettigrew; and sister-in-law, Miriam L. Pettigrew. Her brother, Robert Pettigrew, predeceased her.

Services were held at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church on Sunday, May 23rd, followed by a private interment.

Donations in her memory may be sent to St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, PO Box 587, Bennettsville, SC 29512.

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Labor Day: New Furniture and Bed, pt. 2

So we got the bed delivered and set up today, and we needed sheets.

THANK YOU LORD for Kohl’s Labor Day sale.

Stephen and I bought a 600tc sheet set, extra pillow cases, 2 king size pillows…and a few new shirts for him….and only paid $199. Over $350 saved. We opened a Kohl’s Card and that had helped. Im seriously pleased!! We just need to go to Ikea to buy a new down comforter and duvet. Our sheets are a blue with a set of green pillow cases. I’m hoping we find something perfect!!!

Also went to a Thrift Shop today to drop stuff off. I also picked up a sweater dress, Hawaiian shirt (it had hula girls on it, okay??), and pot for candlemaking.

That Hula Girl shirt will make a splash on our cruise in January!!! 😉

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Labor Day: New Furniture and Bed, pt. 1

Holy cow. Today feels like an entire weekend rolled into one period of time.

The S.O. and I decided to buy a new bed on Thursday night. We upgraded from a queen to a king size, which I hope will be good for our relationship..and luckily we got a pretty good deal on it.

We went to Mattress Warehouse and it was a tad overwhelming. The single sales person was just finishing up with another customer when I decided to lay down on a random bed and start talking strategy with my mattress hunting partner-in-crime. About the time I got comfortable, of course, the shark approached. I guess we OOZED i have no idea what i’m doing.

He asked us all the regular questions: what size are you looking for (king), what are you currently sleeping on (a mix of an over 10-year-old boxspring and an old Ikea hybrid mattress, queen), do you have anything in mind (something comfortable that is going to last us a while)?

We ended up doing their BedMatch thing. You answer a few questions about your age, height, if you sleep with a partner, if you have pain, etc. Then you lay down on these twin mattresses that take data points on your body as you watch a video about how the typical consumer cant buy a correct mattress for themselves. Basically laying there while they tell you that your ignorant and have been doing it wrong forever, and this computer thing will give you exactly what you need.

Being my first ever mattress purchase, I was surprisingly not totally ignorant with picking out mattresses. I know that when I lay down on my back or side, I shouldn’t have any pressure or pain. It should feel like my spine is in alignment. I should also just be comfortable. This all needed to be within a reasonable price-point.

The first time we went to the store, it was on Wednesday. The total price for the bed we liked, frame, boxspring, cover, delivery and set up was about $1,700. Yeah right!!! We left, checked out Sleepy’s, and left there because we were unimpressed. Upon returning home, I began to do my homework. I checked the Serta website and found the exact mattress we fell in love with. If we bought it online, it would have been $1,199. Same mattress.

After learning all of this, we went back on Thursday ready to roll. Different sales guy this time. I had heard about saving an extra 15% on a bed you matched with on BedMatch. So we did that again. We matched with our bed again, thank goodness! So while Stephen was talking numbers with the sales guy, I started pulling te bed back up on my phone. Stephen took his queue and asked me what i was doing. I said that I was looking the bed up online.

I asked the salesman if this “Chamberlynn” bed was the same as Serta’s “Killingsworth” Foam mattress. He began to give me the speech every mattress salesman gives about how the manufacturers make some mattresses special for the stores, so they are not all created equal. I mentioned how everything was identical down to the fabric. He took one look at my phone, say the $1,199 purchase price and brought us to his desktop to look it up there.

He honored the $1,199 for the king size mattress and low profile split boxsprings. He gave us half off the $150 bed frame we needed. After buying the mattress protector, we ended up spending about $1,400 all in. I just looked at the Mattress Warehouse website, and they have finally changed all prices to the Labor Day Sale prices. Even with those changes, we still saved a few hundred dollars.

Totally excited!! On to bedding….

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Small Business Thoughts

I’ve been trying to get myself together and build this business idea I’ve had. It’s not turning out how I thought it would originally. Cutting wine bottles is HARD. Like, really hard.

Something I didn’t realize about wine bottles is that the walls are NOT uniform. That has resulted in a lot of my cuts not being uniform or ending in cracks. So in the end, I’ve spend time etching and breaking the bottle…only to have it crack apart after breaking in water or it forms cracks as I smooth the edges. That really ends up as a danger to me and my S.O. and our cat. Glass isn’t exactly the desired exfoliate for kitten paws.

I LOVE my idea. I just don’t have the money to invest in a powerful diamond blade saw to cut these all right. Even that is no guarantee that I’ll end up with chip and crack free bottles every time. The neck of the bottle usually holds together pretty well. With that in mind, i’m considering moving forward with a different approach.

I tried my first round of actual bottle candles last night. With the 3 decent bottles I’ve managed to break, sand, and fill. They look pretty good! I’m proud of that, but i’m not sure it’s worth all of the time it really took to get to that stage.

It’s almost embarrassing because I, as usual, got overexcited and jumped ahead and started inviting people to a Facebook page and starting thinking about an Etsy page. I’ve pulled the reigns now, and I’m back tracking a little.

I’m wondering if maybe I need to continue with candle making, but in mason jars and tins rather than wine bottles. I understand that the wine bottle was the exciting and new part of this, up-cycling and whatnot…but mason jars are trendy too! I can still break bottles for the necks to make into shades for votive candles.

If you’ve read to this point, God bless you for reading my rant and brainstorm! I’ll write an update soon after i decide what to move forward with.

-A

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Updated!!: WARNING: Sappy Post Ahead

ALRIGHTY!! So, in case you haven’t figured this out, I’m a woman. Hello.

I’m also a girl who has been dreaming of her wedding day since she was a little girl. I know I’m not alone in this. Pinterest was practically created so girls like me finally being able to visually/virtually place their lifelong dreams on the internet. It’s a thing.

So, today at work, it was slow and I have a head cold. This resulted in the following list, I bring you, song options for my future wedding. Maybe.

For Walking Down The Aisle:
This is a very special part of the ceremony to me. It introduces the attendees to the families and closest friends of the Bride and Groom. I want this to be FUN! I also want to keep it classic and timeless. Lucky for me, my SO and I know people who play instruments very well. I’m hoping to hire them to play instrumental versions of songs for everyone.

First Dance Song Ideas
I have a running list of songs I’d love, so that the day planning for my future nuptials begin, I have a starting point.

Other Must Have Songs:

This list will be ongoing…stay tuned!!

XOXO,

Lex

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