Moving On and Starting Over

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Happy Birthday Weez!!!

Aunt Louise with her great-great-great niece Callyn.

At the ripe young age of 90, my aunt is probably one of the most happy and easy-going people I have ever met, a far cry from her brother — my grandfather — who was strict and cranky. Never the less, everyone loves her and she loves everyone.

For the past 10 years for her birthday family from Delaware and Connecticut come together to celebrate Aunt Louise’s birthday. We use the time to catch up with each other, see all of the new additions to the family and see Aunt Louise when she is the happiest: with all of her nieces and nephews.

It is crazy to think that a family of just four sisters and one brother could create the big family we have today. Four generations later, we are still a close bunch of cousins from my mom’s cousins, to their kids, and even their great-grand children.

So last weekend the entire gang got together at a beach-side restaurant in Milford and celebrated. I wish I could have been there to celebrate her birthday with her but I think she will enjoy the 21st birthday card I sent her just as well. I figured with her spunk and happiness she deserved a much younger card than a 90th birthday.

Love you Aunt Louise and Happy 90th!

August 30, 2010 Posted by | Family and friends | 1 Comment

Some of my favorite snacks

Since I’ve been on my own, I have for the first time since I was in college begun buying my own food. In college I did the easy way out. Pasta for dinner, every night. McDonalds for lunch and a fried egg for breakfast. Not the healthiest of options, although they were the cheapest.

Now three years later, and three years older, I’ve learned that just because it’s cheap doesn’t mean it’s the better option. So in the past three months I have found my favorite cheap yet still healthy snacks to go to.

  1. Fruits. Blueberries, raspberries, apples and oranges. They are always good for breakfast, in a salad or for a quick bite in between meals.
  2. Popcorn. Orville Redenbacher is my favorite and comes with some healthy options. My favorite, and my mom’s favorite, is the 94% fat free buttered pop corn. It even comes in 100 calorie packets.
  3. Mini Rice Cakes. Quaker makes mini rice cakes in a variety of flavors which are perfect for a snack at work or snack while in the car. Ranch, Carmel, chocolate and more. Yum.
  4. Chips guacamole and salsa. Okay, so the chips aren’t the healthiest snack around but if you find the right brands, they usually aren’t that bad for you. I prefer the Mission brand chips that come Restaurant style, round, strips and more. I make my own guacamole from fresh avocado, tomato, cilantro, and onions. Or to cheat a little you can throw a little bit of salsa into the avocado and call it a day.

August 28, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The apartment search is here.

The end of the summer is approaching and that means I need to hope on the apartment search band wagon. It’s not that I don’t love living with Patrick. I will probably be bored out of my mind without a roommate to both at all hours of the day and night and vice versa, but I am a very “alone” person. I like my me-time and I like doing things on my own so I am excited to get a place of my own.

I am excited to go home after work and cook dinner for myself. Or to invite people over and have drinks and movie nights.

And to watch what I want! Between my step-dad and Patrick, I’ve never been able to watch whatever shows I want in a living room before. Apparently the Real Housewives series and the Hills are not up to their liking.

But so far, the apartment hunting is not going as easily as I hoped. Okay, I guess in a way I was hoping for an apartment to fall into my lap. You know, perfect price, perfect size, perfect pet-friendly, and perfect location. Well apparently it’s not that easy.

After going to visit the first apartment I really liked I waiting too long, a whole two days, and the furnished studio was given away to another candidate. So tomorrow I am going to visit yet another apartment down in Tarzana. Although they aren’t pet-friendly and not furnished, we will see how it goes and hopefully I will get it.

I just can’t wait for the stress is over and I am settled, with my little kitty, in an apartment.

August 24, 2010 Posted by | Exploring | Leave a comment

My new boots.

In the back yard of Lindsay’s grandparent’s house were three little kittens. A fisty grey one with white on all four of it’s paws, Socks. A little off-white kitty with dark on the tips of it’s paws, Mittens. And the runt: another off-white one with black back paws, Boots. (We named them haha)

After a long time of chasing and plotting, Lindsay, Patrick and I… Okay well mostly Patrick… caught Socks and then Boots and although Socks got away from us and is back with it’s brother or sister Mittens, Boots has become the newest addition to our little family.

We brought him home, got him a carrier, food and litter, bathed him and brought him to the vet. Now at just 6 weeks and 1.3 ounces he is getting more and more used to being around people and being in our house.  Even though he is a little jumpy, the kitten is getting much more social and less timid. He is playing with his toys and going for rides with us.

I am so excited to have a new little friend in my new apartment in Los Angeles. It’s going to be nice to not be 100% alone all of the time like I would be without an animal. Socks is crazy energetic and fun and will keep me entertained while I am home alone. Now all I need to do is actually find an apartment that is animal friendly. I looked at an apartment today that was perfect. A gated parking lot, furnished, pool, new kitchen, but no pets. Lets see if I can get away with it. =]

August 17, 2010 Posted by | Family and friends | 1 Comment

To my babies

 Well it’s almost that time of the summer again. Actually we are about 2 week over due at this point. Summer cheer camp time.

2005 Camp Champs at UCA camp at URI.

Each summer, since I was 15 I have spent the last week of July at cheer camp. Whether it be at my alma mater, Southern Connecticut State University, the University of Rhode Island, a Boston regional camp or Woodland Regional High School, I spent a full four days with 20 high school cheerleaders, UCA and my best friend, Jenn growing as a team.Skills and friendships were formed at camp each year, and the team was always a little different when they came back in August.

Next week my old team and their new teammates will be going to Pine Forst camp in the woods of Pennsylvania where the best of the best goes each summer. I want to wish the girls and Jenn the best of luck next week at one of the best camps Foran has been to. Work hard, soak in everything that your big brother or sister tells you and come home with something good to show me next time I’m in town. Or a fabulous video or two would work also. =]

Miss you girls, good luck and send me home the banana you win at the end of the week.

2009-2010 team after the Thanksgiving game.

August 14, 2010 Posted by | Family and friends | 2 Comments

Best Western stepping up their game.

 
Photo Courtesy of BestWestern.com

Set by itself in an under developed area of National City, Calif. sits the new Best Western Gateway Marina Hotel. A business friendly hotel that just celebrated it’s one year anniversary last month.

The hotel, located right off of exit 10 on the 5, is just 5 miles from Petco Park, Horton Plaza and the rest of downtown San Diego

 

. Yet at the same time, the hotel is close by local corporate locations according to their Website. Right next door is  Busters restaurant which serves breakfast, lunch and dinner with even a late night band playing on their patio the Saturday night we stayed overnight.

The guest rooms are simply decorated with square lampshades, a single headboard for both queen size beds topped by five pillows per bed, and a dark brown single wall behind the light colored wood headboard. One thing I have never understood about hotels, which rings true in the Gateway Marina Hotel: who ever said it was okay to have mismatched prints in hotels. The bed comforter was a light print, with a plaid bed skirt and a different printed rug. But even with all of the different mixes of crazy prints, the brown wall brings it all together, and it works. Older hotels should take notice.

All in all, Best Westerns around the country have really been stepping up their game. At one point I used to compare Best Westerns with Econo Lodges or other side-of-the-highway hotels. Now the hotel chains are picking up the pace and really comparing the Marriot hotels and other hotels at that level.

To book a reservation at the Best Western Gateway Marina Hotel visit their Website or give them at a call at 1-800-780-7234.

August 9, 2010 Posted by | Exploring | Leave a comment

Here are some photos my sister took of the new dolphin show, Blue Horizon’s, at Sea World San Diego last weekend. Enjoy.

            

August 8, 2010 Posted by | Events and adventures, Family and friends | Leave a comment

Blue Horizons doesn’t impress

Photo courtesy of SeaWorld.com

Two years ago when an “audience member” “fell” into the pool of 300 pound animals at the dolphin show in Sea World I was shocked. Scared and almost panicked even. But then once she began getting pushed around by the animal and tossed into the air after standing on his nose, I put two and two together: she was a trainer acting as an audience member.

So while down in Sea World San Diego with my mom and sister last week I was excited for them to see one of my favorite shows at the park.

While some of you may be thinking, great she just ruined it for me, think again. A new dolphin show opened at the aquatic theme park this summer called Blue Horizons.

The 25-minute show is full of dolphins, cranes, green-winged Macaws, pilot whales, acrobats and divers. Yes that’s right, acrobats and divers as well as the animals you expected to see. The show is a very Disney meets Cirque du Soleil meets Sea World. It seems even a little confused as to what direction it wants to take.

As the main “character,” or trainer, dressed in a gown that turns into a pink wet suit, frolics around the stage like a Disney princess to fairytale-like music, she only actually is in the water for less than five minutes.

A little while later into the show an acrobat dressed as a bird with wings and red feathers soars high above the audience and pool with the animals swimming below. She is then joined by two other bird-like acrobats for the audience’s entertainment as the cranes and Macaws soared across the stadium.

Another part of the show divers come out to two podiums set above the pool. At this point the animals are in the back pools behind the stage. The divers entertain for about 5 minutes doing different combinations of front and back flips, twisting fulls and layouts.

Although these divers and acrobats are amazing, showing strength that only a gymnast could have, I’m pretty sure I came to see a dolphin show, not a Cirque de Soleil act.

I would have liked to see more animal interaction, even though the tricks they did do were amazing. And of course the best part of any aquatic animal show, the 12 row soak zone Blue Horizon’s had was much needed. People all the way to the top of the 12th row left wet from the splashes from the whales and dolphins.

Sea World’s Website suggests checking the park’s map to see Blue Horizon’s schedule. The show is a quick  25 minutes.

August 5, 2010 Posted by | Events and adventures, Family and friends | Leave a comment

Uht oh…

Today the unthinkable happened: my camera died. But not to worry, I will be stealing all of my sister’s and my mom’s photos before they leave!

We’ve got a lot done since they got here last week. We drove up PCH to Point Dume in Malibu, drove through Rodeo Drive (where we spotted Mark Wahlberg driving next to us in his Bentley), spent the day down in San Diego touring the beaches, went to Sea World and then ended the week in Disneyland.

Now they are off to Connecticut and I am back to work and exploring.

August 4, 2010 Posted by | Family and friends | Leave a comment