No Time to Rest

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So, so busy but it’s a good busy.

This past Friday, Lisa and I took the day off and drove out to Frederick, MD and checked out a new place for some all-you-can-eat crabs. Long story short, we weren’t impressed. Guess we’ll stick with our place over on the Eastern Shore.

We’re about five and a half months from our first family cruise!

This weekend, Greg is surprising Amelia and me with a new destination. All I know is that we’re still going to be in MD, but to somewhere we haven’t been before. I am very curious as to where we’re going.

On Sunday, we’re heading up to Fort Frederick to attend a BBQ and then on Monday we’re heading down to my Moms to hang out.

Lots of driving this weekend.

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When I can’t sleep…

I blog. Sort of. And play Words with Friends.

Why am I up at 2:30am? It’s not like I had a lot of caffeine today. On the plus side, I don’t have to be at work until 11 so I will be able to sleep in… Amelia permitting.

May is such a busy month for us; it’s been non-stop weekends since the beginning and I don’t see it slowing down anytime soon. Eventually, I’d like to write about Easter, my promotion at work, Mother’s Day, Greg’s 33rd birthday, and other events but I don’t know when I’ll have the time (unless I stay up until 2:30am every night).

In other news, I’ve switched schools and I’m now a student of the University of Maryland! My first class begins June 1 and it’s accounting– should be easy, right?

Greg and I have enrolled Amelia into a Summer Camp of sorts. It’s a private school that offers a summer program and it sounds awesome! I hope there are a lot of opportunities for volunteers or chaperones! In addition to the summer school, Amelia is enrolled in Pre-K at the same private school. I can’t believe my baby girl is grown up!

We’re still on for the cruise in November and we’re hoping to get a trip to Ocean City, MD sometime in August before school starts.

Amelia has been asking Greg and I every week since October if we’re going back to Disney World. We tell her that we will go back one day. However, we have a plan: a surprise trip for Amelia’s 6th birthday! We’re totally going be like the Disney commercials where the kids are told once they wake up. Unfortunately, we have to wait a year and a half but that gives us enough time to save for a stay at the Polynesian or Animal Kingdom Lodge.

House hunting is coming along. We are meeting with the financial counselor in June to move on to the next step and we hope to have a home by next Spring at the latest.

So, there is a lot going on in my little world.

Update 1.7

You know you need a vacation when your dreams involve both jobs!

This weekend we are heading out to Western Maryland to spend some time with my girlfriend, Michele. It’s going to be a girls weekend while Greg and Amelia are going to explore the area.

…. …. …. ….

We are only 45 days away from our Disney Vacation! We still need to figure out how we’re getting to the airport and back, but that’s a minor detail.

I’m still looking at stuff to buy for the trip; I want to make this trip as memorable as possible … and not spend an arm an a leg. I feel an itch to do some craft-y projects coming on, but I’m not sure if I’ll have the time to commit to them.

… …. …. …

School is going well. There are only 2 weeks left of the current course and then I start a new 8 weeks course.

A part of me is curious as to how long I’m going to keep this (being a student) up; am I going to finally earn a Bachelors Degree or will I eventually stop due to a chaotic life (work, new baby, etc). I’d like to think that I am going to be able to finish this ‘project’, but I also don’t want to set high expectations. As for now, I’m still going strong and don’t foresee any reasons to ‘take a break’.

… … … …

iPhone 4. OMG! It’s breath taking amazing. It feels good in the hand, looks good to the eyes… It’s … Perfect. I love the glass front and back, it cleans so well! You can totally see a difference with the new retina display; everything is so sharp and clean!

Oh, and the 5 MP camera with flash (that actually works) is worlds better than the camera that was on the 3G. Also, the videos that are recorded are nice and sharp (I’ve uploaded several videos onto YouTube and Facebook).

If you’ve been on the fence about upgrading to the iPhone 4 — do it! You will not regret it.

Monthly Update

It’s (almost) Summer time which means POOL TIME!

I love swimming. Like,  borderline addiction, love. And, I am so excited that Amelia is potty trained because that means we will be spending every free moment at the community pool!

We took Amelia on Monday for her first swim. She didn’t care for it at first but with in minutes she was jumping off the side of the pool! See for your self:

Or, better yet, watch a clip:

As you can tell, we have a camera that we can take underwater. Actually, it’s a underwater housing unit that we bought for my point and shoot camera to use on the cruise but never had the opportunity.

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As previously mentioned, May was one helleva busy month. I had a photography gig and shot for 56Kay (all the pictures on their site were taken by me) and ended up meeting Matt Beilis (you should also check out his YouTube page; he’s awesome).

Matt Beilis and his band:

(I have a thing for drummers)

I love going to live shows; they’re so much fun. And, I get to meet and hang out with really awesome people.

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School is keeping me busy… sorta. This particular course is kinda on the too easy side, so I don’t really pay that much attention to the lecture and breeze through the lab and quiz. I’ve maintained an A for the course without much effort. The next two classes that start next month are going to much more challenging as one of them is psychology.

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The photography gig at the local hospital is going well. The commissions are starting to roll in and each week is a nice surprise! It’s kind of funny (in the non-haha way), I’ve noticed that I generate more sales in the two days that I work than the other chick does in the 5 days that she works (and she’s been working as a photographer for 2 years). I don’t know if it’s because I’m more sociable to the new parents, or that I (possibly) take better pictures. Though, it’s not like I am complaining, but a thought of interest that occurred to me.

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We’re 3 months and twenty some-number of days until we arrive at Disney World! Amelia is getting so excited about meeting all her favorite characters. I’m starting to get a little excited as well, though I think it will really sink in once we reach August…. which at the rate the  months are flying by, it’ll be here soon!

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We don’t have any concrete Summer plans. I was talking to my Mom about taking a girls trip to Ocean City, MD during the week at some point and she’s keen with that idea. The reason we’d visit during the week, aside from obvious reasons: cheaper room rates and low crowds, is because I have a shit load of vacation days to use; like in excess of 20+ days. And, it’s totally sad that I had a mild anxiety attack when I calculated and confirmed with HR how many days I have left… because I don’t want to miss work. I’m a freak. I know. It’s just that I hate having work pile up while I am gone. Because there isn’t anyone to replace me when I am out. Talk about job security, right? So, I’m going to have to find something to do and go to during the week to burn off some days. Joy.

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I’m enrolling Amelia in dance classes this summer!

Recap

It’s been a busy week for me. Thankfully, the weekend job was on the light side. I did learn, however, that one of the babies I photographed on Saturday ended up going into the NICU so the mother was very thankful that we were able to get pictures done.  Though, I should add this mother was a drug addict and the baby boy was going through withdrawals. Sadly, this isn’t the first mother I’ve met at the hospital that has a baby going through withdrawal. Unfortunately, the hospital that I am assigned to has a predominate population of drug addicts, low income, etc.  I don’t judge them because there’s no point.

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On Saturday we went to our park, Ft. Smallwood, and did our bi-weekly grilling which consisted of a marinated pork loin, chicken sausage, hot dogs, boneless, skinless chicken breasts, and a marinated London broil. We cook this much to feed us as our lunch and dinners for a week.

Amelia had a good time, as usual.

Mimi just chilling

It was really windy on Saturday so we ended up on the other side of the park.

We were to meet with some friends of mine but we had to reschedule.

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So, I should be working on my school paper but I’m not. Instead I am filling out job applications to work as a civilian in the Federal Government. It’s not my first choice of a career given the reputation of Government jobs, but it’s one that I know will allow me to provide for my family (current and any future additions). Also, I’m hoping my Bachelors in Business Administration will score some bonus points!

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Speaking of family… Greg and I are I guess what you can say as “trying to conceive” for our second. Amelia is ready to be a Big Sister — she’s even telling everyone that she has a baby brother on the way!! She must know something that I don’t. LOL Though, we’re not really trying but more like … if it happens, great; if not… then at least we tried.

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Our Disney trip is only five months away! I am excited about going this time as opposed as last year. Also, we’re taking my Mom (or treat) and she’s even admitted to be excited even though she’d rather we save our money for a house. I’m just eagerly anticipating the free dining promotion to be announced, which I was able to take advantage of last year.  I have already made our “ADR’s” (advanced dining reservations), even to the places I didn’t think I’d actually get a decent time for!

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Our weekends are starting to book-up with plans. We have a few photography gigs beginning in May and throughout the summer, a college graduation to attend, the monthly RSC’s, a few air shows to participate in, as well as a few visits to the beach (hopefully). I like having plans in advance; it gives me something to look forward to and will help the time go by fast.

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This weekend is Greg’s 32nd birthday! A few weeks ago I made dinner reservations at Fogo de Chao.  My friend Jay and his wife, Leslee, go on a regular basis and love it and one night I was chatting with Jay and he really recommended it so I made the reservation. I’ve also ordered a cake from my favorite bakery, Sugar Bakers. I ordered Greg’s favorite cake, Red Velvet, in the shape of a baseball. The cake should look something like this:

But much prettier. I plan on surprising Greg with the cake, though I’ll probably end of giving it to him early since I am picking up the cake on Friday.

PA or Bust

it was a BUST.

Greg and I did a little road trip to PA this afternoon. Our plan was to visit a couple of PA’s state parks, particularly Boyd Big Tree Preserve Conservation and Gifford Pinchot State Park.  I’ve never venjured this far into PA (sad, I know) and was curious to know if Hershey Park was near the state parks (another place I’ve never been) and with the weather so… perfect… I wanted to visit. Well, until I went to the Hershey Park website and saw that it was still closed. Oh well, a trip for the future I’m sure.

Why was the PA trip a bust? Well, the parks we visited were not to our… expectations. Boyd Big Tree is very new and wasn’t really toddler friendly; granted there were ‘easy trails’ that we started to walk down, but we learned quickly that this wasn’t something Amelia was going to enjoy. So, we left and drove around a little. Greg was looking for a particular rest stop/overlook along the Susquehanna River, but my patience was wearing thin (I was doing the driving) and I wanted Amelia to get out and run around – after all, it was a gorgeous day! Plus, I was tired of reading all the “Adult Outlet” signs – that strip of road is the mecca for all things porn (and toys)!

About an hour after we left Boyd Big Tree we arrived at Gifford Pinchot State Park. This park is more for the older folk; it is located on a beautiful lake with lots of boating activities and really nice cabins to rent (and pretty cheap, we’re looking into renting a cabin in the Fall), but there wasn’t enough for the young folk – Amelia. There was a small playground, but nothing spectacular, like the ones near us. But, we hung out for about two hours letting Amelia do her thing.

We headed home a little after 5 and stopped for dinner at Cracker Barrel in York, PA. Thankfully, dinner was quick, and Amelia actually ate a good bit of her chicken and dumplings. The reason I was thankful that dinner was quick was because I was tired and wanted to get home; that and I don’t really care much for the restaurant – just isn’t “our place” like Houlihans is. I only took a few pictures today, literally, and they were with the iPhone:

the others are on my Facebook page.

So, all in all we spent about 4 hours in a car and a half a tank of gas and we didn’t have the good time we were anticipating. Greg and I began planning this trip earlier in the week when we knew the weather was going to be in our favor (as in no possibilities for rain or anything else) and by Thursday I was counting down to the weekend because of this trip. Needless to say, I had high expectations and was disappointed. So was Greg. But, it was great to get out and be in the sun exploring new areas.

I was curious about something and got the chance to try it out on the trip: last night Amelia and I went to visit my brother and we all went to Target (it’s kinda ‘our thing’  – the brother and I lazily walking around Target buying items that aren’t in dire need). I wanted to see if there was a stereo cable that I could use to plug the iPhone (the headphone jack) to the AUX jack that’s in my car… I was curious to know if I plugged the iPhone to the AUX jack, if the music would play through the car speakers. I was happy when I found these car stereo cables and figured that was what I needed. My brother noticed my curiosity and then doubted my hypotheses; he didn’t believe I had a stereo jack in my car – which made me begin to second guess myself. Well, my brother, being the awesome brother that he is, ended up paying for EVERYTHING (I had picked up a new bonnet for Amelia, some food items, new sippy cups, and my brother threw in a few toys for Amelia), including the stereo cables. So, I was eager to test the cables out but… I erased the 5 songs I had on the iPhone (though, I don’t know how I did that). So, when I got home and had a few drinks (pineapple juice and coconut rum), I attempted to figure out iTunes (still hate the program with a passion) and ripped some songs from various CD’s and miraculously added the songs to the iPhone (still don’t know how I did it with the 3 very strong drinks I had) and my hypothese was correct! Also, I can play songs from YouTube and hear them through the car speakers. So, listening to the iPhone while en route made the trip easier.  And, with this knowledge (which I’m sure die-hard iPhone fans/users already knew about) about the stereo/AUX jack, we no longer have a need for XM Radio so we’re going to cancel the subscription. Yay!

No plans for tomorrow, yet. I want to go to another park (locally) and cook on the grill, but there is a ton of laundry that needs to get done as well as some household cleaning.  Who knows, we’ll see.

Updates

I’m disappointed to write that there was no 5am Battering Ram team. We don’t know what happen from when we talked to the cop around 1pm to when we came home around 5pm; evidentially something happened because our neighbor was no longer ‘in hiding’, or so it seemed.

As expected, the O’s lost yesterday. But, the game was enjoyable nonetheless. I really enjoy baseball as a sport; it’s exciting to watch and play. I don’t really follow the team members (other than Brandon Fahey, but I follow him because of his strong inner strength rather than his (in)ability to play short stop) or their stats. I enjoy going to a game and I honestly root for the O’s and what other team they’re playing; hey, if a good hit was made, a great double or triple play was done – I’m going to cheer for you regardless.

I did take some nice pictures of the game:

Buildings in Baltimore City

Detroit Tigers Bullpen

Picture of us enjoying the game

I usually don’t wear a baseball cap but it was very sunny and hot and I don’t own a pair of sunglasses, so I took one of Greg’s hats (the cleanest one). I used to wear this hat when I worked at Weis (when they made me wear a hat) and Greg says I somehow shrunk that hat – hmm… doubt that… I just think he doesn’t want to wear it anymore for other reasons. Either way, it’s a neat hat – UAF – University of Alaska Fairbanks. Greg spent a good chunk of his childhood in Alaska (Kodiak and Sitka) and then in Oregon before moving to MD for good (for now). Moving on…

View from our seats

The section we sat in was the “AYCE” seats. We had “free” supplies of drink and snacks. But, given how hot it was I had a very small appetite and mostly drink my $20 worth of lemonade and soda. But, I did enjoy a few (maybe 3) ice cream sandwiches.

And, Greg and I forgot to put on sunblock so we both got a decent sunburn (I was expecting worse). But, at the same time, we (or I) want to have some tanned skin for when we go to the Caribbean this winter (and we’ve actually talked about going to a tanning salon!!) Luckily, I can hold a tan for quite some time due to my quarter bit Native American Indian heritage (hence the reason Amelia was so dark when she was born and how she’s more tan than Greg!)

Speaking of Amelia, she’s having a grand time with my Mom and step-dad! She loves to play with Lucy (the horse) and run around the huge yard. Mom bought her a little swimming pool after hearing about how well she did at the birthday party from the other weekend. It’s so cute to talk to Amelia over the phone! She’ll tell Greg and me that she misses and “wuves” us (yes, she can’t say “L”s very well at this moment). It’s hearing her say “I wuve you too” that’s the sinker for Greg and me. Amelia just started saying I Love You about two weeks ago on her own. It’s so quiet without her and we miss her to bits, but at the same time we’re able to get so much done around the condo and have more freedom to do spontaneous things after work.

This past Saturday we spent the day at my Mom’s celebrating her 49th birthday. Sean and I bought a bushel of crabs for Mom:

and just hung around the house until 10:30pm. Greg walked around and took some amazing pictures again, and he got the chance to use the wide angle lens some more (which I am totally loving):

We also set off a few fireworks, but those pictures didn’t turn out so great.

While visiting, Greg and my step-dad were talking about camera and lenses and the sorts (Step-dad is also an avid photographer but more along the lines of semi-pro) and Greg was telling him something about a tripod and my step-dad offers one to Greg! Actually, he let Greg pick one of two that he could have (and my step-dad has many more). So, what does Greg do with his new tripod, he goes and takes a picture of the night sky and stars… and I’ll have to post one of those photos later because I am unable to network to Greg’s computer at the moment.

All in all it was a nice weekend. I wish I could say the same about today. Work was uber stressful and my level of patience has dropped dramatically this month, among other things (*ahem*blogging*ahem*). I just feel… done… with everything at the moment. As well as bored. I’m frustrated at work because I’m not allowed (yes, they are not allowing me) to complete the tasks that they keep assigning me. I actually have to get permission to work on other things! It’s ridiculous! And I’m one of those people that like to keep my inbox empty – which means I only leave items in there that I need to be completed and as of tonight, I have over 20 uncompleted tasks and it drives me crazy.

Also, today, I had my dental evaluation. I only made this appointment so I could get some antibiotics for my tooth; which, I might add, the office had no problems, whatsoever, prescribing me Lorazepam over the phone, but they had to see me, in person, to prescribe Amoxicillion. What’s wrong with this picture? Also, I’ve come to the conclusion the dentists practically GIVE out Lortab or Hydrocodone! They didn’t even ask if I was in pain today and prescribed me MORE pain meds (fortunately, I still have plenty from when I had my gall bladder removal – but even then I’ve only taken two pills since the tooth broke on July 6th). Good thing I’m not addicted to this stuff. Oh, and this extraction is going to set me back $310!!! And we’re going to have to dip into our savings to pay for it since we’re going to Ocean City the day after my extraction – which they told me wasn’t going to be an easy procedure (and probably worse than the last one) and that it was a good idea to suggest/accept the Lorazepam for sedation and anxiety – which, by the way, is the reason it’s going to cost me $310 (the sedation alone is $145). What a great way to start my mini-vacation.

Greg and I had a serious talk about the possibility of me being pregnant and how we feel about it. While the thought is exciting and we are embracing the possibility, we’re a little concerned about how we’re going to make it. Presently, we’re actually doing OK. We have a little bit of money in the savings account (not a lot, but some) and we’re current with all our bills; as well as been on time with all our bills (meaning no late charges and improving our credit). Basically, at this moment in our life everything is working out just right – not too much, not too little. Adding a baby is going to make things a little more challenging, financially. We’ve talked about cutting back our expenses (canceling cable, but keeping the Internet, eating out less, etc) and finding ways to bring in more income, such as me looking more into LiveOps and Greg selling his photos online (which we’re actually getting ready to set up; Greg just needs to pick out 5-10 of his best photos and edit them to his level of perfection). I used one of the online pregnancy calculators and it stated that if I am pregnant and conceived around the time of my last cycle (which, again, was just 2 days of spotting), that my estimated due date is April 10, 2009. That’s a little freaky. I really need to find a new doctor and get the answer.