Saturday, December 19, 2009


There is a tree in my neighbors yard that I drive past every morning and just stare at. It is absolutely gorgeous. And quite the driving hazard. My eyes always manage to leave the road and sway up to the left for a few moments too long. I'm glad most of the neighborhood has already left for work by the time I do, or else I would probably be the cause of a few morning fender benders. I could just imagine the police report "woman driving was staring at a tree, not the road, and rear-ended driver in front of her." That would be an accident my mom would be proud of! I really wish I had a nicer camera, like a digital SLR, so I could take some decent pictures of this tree. Down here we don't get too many trees that have vivid colors when they change, hell we don't even have many that change at all! Most of our pines go from green, to brown, to green, to brown, on a cyclical pattern regardless of the season. The other trees seem to lose their leaves once the mercury dips below 60. Once it hits 59 they're naked. Well not this particular tree. I have had the absolute pleasure of watching it turn from green to firetruck red. Then after a week or so the red faded into a brilliant pink. Now a light orange has begun to creep in from the edges of the leaves. Each leaf looks like a beautiful sunset. Surrounded by dying green and brown, these leaves stand out easily. And I get to stare at it for a few seconds every morning.

It's amazing how something so small and trivial can be the cause of such happiness. I remember growing up in the North East, I loved the fall because it was so colorful. Driving to my best friend's house was so much fun. The dogwoods that lined her street would be throwing up shades of yellow and orange for weeks on end, eventually turning the sidewalks yellow as well. When I moved up to Boston I felt as though the fall would come and go all too quickly. If I blinked the leaves would be gone. Now, I get to see this tree turning for weeks on end! It's such a small thing, but I get to start off every day with a smile on my face, and that just can't be beat.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Terrible Blogger

I am such a terrible blogger. Ugh. I'm sorry. I've seriously been meaning to update this for some time now, buuut I've been meaning to do a lot of things recently and haven't gotten around to any of it. I blame that on my GNDs taking up whatever free time I have during the day. But I still love them lol.

Today is my last day of work until 2010!!! Wooooo!!! The holidays are going to be sooo busy, but I can't wait to get them underway! We're going to get to see a lot of friends over the next two weeks and I couldn't be more excited about that! I plan on taking lots and lots of pictures, so I'll post some when I get back :-) And I promise I will make more updates, although it seems like a lot of my followers didn't make it over from the blog move... hmm maybe I should update them.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Dear Rain

Why do you keep avoiding my house? I see you at work all the time, but then when I invite you over to my house you always so rudely decline. It's only a few miles away!! It wouldn't kill you to make the trip! Are you afraid of my dog?? I promise she's warming up to you more and more... ignore how she treats the sprinklers, they're completely different. Was it something I said? I can promise I never meant to offend you in any way, shape or form. If I did, i sincerely apologize!! I just really want us to get back to how it was in the old days.. like last year, pre-Ike! Things were good then. You'd come visit me, we'd have a great time, then you'd leave before over-staying your welcome. Why can't we be like that again?!?! Please, let me know how I can make it up to you! I miss you...more than you'll ever know.

With all my love,

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


I'm such a hypocrite! I yell at Kristen for not updating her blog, then I go 3 weeks without blogging myself!! I promise it won't happen again...anytime soon...without advanced notice.

Soooo... what have I been up to in the past few weeks?? Not a whole lot... Probably the most exciting thing is our friends have all but decided to have a destination wedding!! In MEXICO!!!! Woooo hoooo!!! I'm wicked excited! We went over to their house a few weekends ago and Melissa and I were looking through all sorts of magazines getting an idea of where they might want to have it. It was kind of amusing... when we flipped to the Riviera Maya section of hotels I pretty much knew the pros and cons of ever...single...resort. She was amazed! I'm tellin ya though, I did my research!! They're thinking sometime in March or April of 2010. So it looks like we'll almost definitely be taking an anniversary trip!!! YAY!!!

We're also planning a trip to the Messina Hof vineyard in Bryan, TX (close to Texas A&M), possibly this weekend. This is the last weekend of their 2009 Harvest Festival. It includes picking grapes and stomping them! And of course we'll do some wine tasting as well :-) It should be a good time, the wines are good and I've never been to a vineyard!

Other than that, not a whole lot has been going on... last weekend we got our air ducts cleaned (apparently they really needed it!) and we got 2 rooms steam cleaned as well. Not too interesting, but man, the steam cleaning makes a difference!

On a side note, I'd just like to say that if I were to go outside right now, I'd have to wear my sunglasses and bring my umbrella... it's pouring, but sunny. I don't get it...

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


Today is an "UGH" day. I almost feel like I'm in shock. I'm mostly confused though. And tired. Tired physically (last night's body combat kicked my ass!!), tired emotionally, and tired of all this crap/drama going on.

The family crap is getting real old, and I'm getting very close to my breaking point with it. Poor DH... I try so hard to put on a good face for him, but when it gets too much, Nicolezilla breaks loose (not lose ha) and no one's safe!! I wonder if/when people will get it... huh.

The work stuff is just ridiculous. I'm gearing up to try out option A, and thinking about option B and C. I think I've ruled option B out, but I would like to talk to my neighbor who is option B about it. If I can get my foot in the door at a decent place and make decent money like her, that would be a very nice option. I don't know if I could hack it with option C, but I can always apply and see how it goes from there.

I know that was all incredibly cryptic... but see, if I don't tell people my plans, I don't have to tell them when they don't work out/fall through/I get rejected!

Oh and finally, I'm tired of feeling overlooked by our families. That is one of the crappiest feelings EVER. Of course, my mom could never make me feel this way though. She really is the best and I'm SO lucky to have her! And DH couldn't either. There's no way he could ever do that.

On days like today I just have to keep reminding myself of all the great things I have going. I have a job. There are a lot of people out there who don't. And while I'm not where I want to be professionally, I know there are a ton of people would love gladly take my job! I have a wonderful and loving husband (who also has a job, yay!). I'm lucky enough to be married to my best friend and that is just AWESOME!! The list goes on from there, but then I'd sound like I was bragging ;-)

So the lesson of today: Stay positive!!!!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Happy (Belated) 4th Of July!!

"You know it really didn't feel too bad out there today. What do you think the high was?" I asked George. "Oh probably only about 102, not bad" he said "Oh no, that's not bad at all!" I responded.

That was an actual conversation for this past Saturday, the 4th. When the F did 102 degrees become "not that bad"??? That is really freakin hot!!! 85 degrees is not bad, even 90 degrees isn't *too* bad! But 102. That's bad!

My BIL (brother-in-law) Paul, aka Paulie Poodles, came down for the long weekend. He came in Wednesday morning and I picked him up at the airport. Thursday we ran some errands, got some shoes for toobin, and Andrew got off early from work (yaaaay!!) so we hung out with him and got stuff ready to head to New Braunfels the next morning. Thursday night we went to Sam's boat for dinner and drinks with our NE friends Chuck and Maria. It was F'ing H-O-T out! Just sitting at the bar outside made me all sweaty and gross feeling. We decided to eat inside so we got a table at, where else, but the actual BOAT inside Sam's Boat. Poodles absolutely loved this!! he had a great time buying the boys "boat shots" of JD (the girls volunteered to be the DDs). We stayed at Sam's for a little then headed home...I wanted to be on the road before 7:30 the next morning!

All of us in the boat

Friday morning we got to New Braunfels at a decent time and headed to Landa Falls for some tooobin on the Comal River. It was my first time toobing in Texas and I was NOT disappointed!! At first I was a little nervous about the water temperature, it stays about 72 degrees all year long (better than the Guadalupe which runs about 68!), but the water was sooo refreshing! It was definitely over 100 so the nice cool water felt amazing. We had such a great time on the River! We met up with Jamie, Melissa, Crystal, Blake, Brian, and Jamie and Melissa's dad Jim. It was really nice having Jim along for the ride, he grew up in New Braunfels and knew all the areas of the Comal to avoid. Because we've had NO rain for a bit over a month, the river was somewhat shallow in some parts, but I don't think it really affected the ride, other than making it a little longer than usual, which we were all more than ok with! Also due to the lack of rain, the Guadalupe (which is longer than the Comal, it runs into the Guadalupe) was very low. Normally they can open up the dam from Canyon Lake and let the river fill up a little, but it was too low even for that! So the Comal was a bit more crowded than usual.

I'd say the only bad part about the trip was when we ran out of beer! Next time we'll remember to bring more!

After toobing we went to Cooper's bar-b-q. Soooooo good! I love bar-b-q. I could eat bbq chicken all day long! Check out all the food Poodles got:

That, my friends, is what $30 worth of meat looks like! He had pork loin, prime rib, ribs, and sausage. Andrew and I split some chicken and brisket and our meal came to a combined $16. This place was pretty cool. When you walk in you're greeted by two bbq pits and someone ready to cut the meat that you want, then they weigh it, cut it up more, and give it to you either on butcher paper or in a tin like above. Just thinking about it now is making me salivate! This is where Poodles had his first ever JalapeƱo... wow was that amusing!! Andrew ate one like it was nothing, so Paul thought he could too... bad idea Poodles, bad idea. He looked like he was in so much pain!!! The best part though, was Opi, Jamie and Melissa's Grandfather laughing his ass off at Paul the entire time!

After dinner, we headed over to Mike and Michelle's house on Lake Placid in Seguin. Holy guacamole was this house NICE!!! It actually belongs to George and Cathy (Michelle's parents) and they are nice enough to extend an open invitation to Mike and Michelle's friends and their friends. We hung out there for a little, went on a cruise on their pontoon boat and marvelled at all the other amazing houses on the lake. It was such a nice night out!! Absolutely no bugs too!! Not even mosquitoes!!

The next morning (the 4th) we headed back to the lake house for some water fun festivities. We went out on the ski boat and took turns on the tube. First Andrew and Blake went with Mike and Michelle's son Cade. Somehow, Mike managed to throw Blake off... we're still not sure how that happened... Next Blake, Paul, and Brian went. I was honestly amazed at how well they held on. Brian told Mike to kill them before they went, and man did he try! This was taken right before the whole thing tipped over and they all went flying off:

After that it was the girls' turn. We told Mike we did NOT want him to go as crazy with us as he did with the boys, and like any good gentlemen, he didn't. At first. We were having a great time and we got a little cocky and decided to all go "no-hands" at the same time. Yeah, bad idea. As soon as Mike saw that he floored it, and we went flying on the tube. We went over some HUGE waves, but we managed to stay on! By the end of that ride my arms were soooo tired! My favorite shot from our ride -

At that point, Jamie (left) and I (right) were getting tossed around like rag dolls!! After this picture was taken, I looked over to see if everyone was still on, and I saw Jamie's left leg (the one that's in the air) behind Crystal's head! She somehow managed to hang on though! I'm also, not actually standing up, I was just being bounced in the air. A few more bumps after this and we were done! We were all so tired and the water started getting really choppy. There was one bump where we could all feel our spines compacting. At that point we'd had enough!

After the ride on the ski boat, we took the pontoon boat and ski boat out to the middle of the lake in front of the house and tied them together. We hung out in rafts in the water for the rest of the afternoon and mingled with the other lakers who came to enjoy the day like us. We had such a great time!!! I have a ton of pictures, but at this point, I'm too lazy to put them up, so if you're curious, check out facebook!

Later that night we went back on the boat and headed out to the middle of the lake again to watch the fireworks from the water. For whatever reason (we're guessing the drought conditions) the fireworks were really low, and we couldn't completely see them. But we were all so tired/drunk/happy that it didn't matter anyway! After the fireworks the boys played Corn-hole for a good... ooooh 3 hours? Kailey (Mike and Michelle's 4 y/o) and Cade (5 y/o) took turns taking all sorts of hysterical pictures with mine and Jamie's cameras. They were so cute though!! I finally passed out around 12-1 when I was the only girl left, and I'm pretty sure the boys wrapped up their game pretty soon after.

Now I'm back in my office.... and it's raining. Which is awesome. It's been sooo dry and hot here for so long that everything is dying! I'm wishing I was still at the lake though. New goal in life... Do whatever George and Cathy did and get a similar house!!!

Monday, June 29, 2009

I'm a hoarder

I just realized the sad truth... I am a...a... a hoarder!! Of food only though. And maybe flip-flops. Mainly food. We got an e-mail sent out to our office that there were leftover sandwiches in the break room. Initially I didn't get any because I had a yummy yummy salad from Subway, but after the fifth wilted, disgusting, brown piece of lettuce was dug out of the salad, it didn't look so yummy anymore (NOT impressed Subway, not impressed at all!!). So I went down to see what sandwiches were left. There were only three, two that looked like they were probably chicken salad and one that was probably tuna salad. At first I passed on the sandwiches and just went for the amazing-looking pasta salad (sooo good, but I feel bad for whoever has to talk to me for the rest of the day...they did NOT go light on the garlic!), but then after someone came in and declared the chicken salad to be amazing I snatched one up. So I'm now sitting at my desk with a 1/4 eatten salad, pasta salad (and not a tiny helping either), and half of a (possibly) chicken salad sandwich. Why? Why in the world would I ever need this much food? Especially now that my summer appetite is in full swing (when it reaches 95 degrees it's just too hot to eat! I seldom get hungry in this weather and when I finally do, I could eat an almond and be satisfied). I'll tell you why - I'm a hoarder. I don't know if it's some sort of basic instinctual thing coming out in me or if I'm just selfish. Maybe it's a product of being an only child and never having to share (although I kinda doubt this one...). Or maybe, I'm just weird.

I've noticed this before in the past though. I was even like this even in high school! Going back to the days sitting in Renatos with my friends... when someone asked to have a cheese-fry I would always say yes, then glare the crap outta them when they picked up one that wasn't minimally covered with cheese. It's not like I need this food or even want it all! But here it is sitting on my desk. Don't I know that there are kids in India and Africa STARVING?!?! Hunger is even an issue in this country (is it not an issue anywhere??) but I'm here...being wasteful. Shame on me. I miss the days where I could just walk out the doors of the GSU and head down to the area in front of the Theology building and give my left over food to whichever bum was closest to the street. At least then I could justify ordering a large when I knew I probably wouldn't be able to finish a small.

I'm long past the days of eating out of guilt. I no longer surround myself with, or even associate with, people who will call me anorexic and make me feel bad for not finishing a meal that could clearly feed two people. And I have come to terms with the fact that, yes, Andrew is bigger than me, and therefore should eat more. So why do I still pile on the helpings?!?! Anyone have any insight??

I just gave the sandwich to my co-worker who I think is actually a garbage disposal in disguise. If I'm a hoarder, he's a million times worse! Although better at the same time... he actually eats what he hoardes! So there... I can justify my hoarding for today!!! I got the sandwich so I could give it to him, so he could save the food he brought for lunch and give it to his kids!! See, I knew I had a reason to do it! Oh, and I picked out all the good looking veggies and meat from the salad, but threw-out most of the lettuce. I'm just not into half-decomposed lettuce... call me crazy. So that wasn't a complete bust either!

Now I feel better about myself and can continue on with my day :-)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

I don't care anymore!!!!!!

Wooooo!!!!!!! At least I don't think I do.... right now I definitely don't!

Let me fill you all in a bit... For whatever reason I seem to be incredibly blessed, and somewhat cursed in the friends department. My BEST friends are amazing! They fly and drive all over the country (continent I should say) to see me and spend time with me. They are amazing. Even the ones that I don't see for a while, whenever we do meet up it's like no time has passed at all and everything is wonderful. I am so lucky to have these people in my life and I hope that I'm being the type of friend that deserves them.

The others... well... I don't even know that I would call them friends anymore. Sure we're "friends" on facebook... but I haven't talked to some of these "friends" in many, many months. And it's not like I haven't tried. I've tried texting, e-mailing, calling, you name it... no response. For months. Until they need something. Then it's "heeeey, we haven't talked in soooo long!! I miss you sooooooo much!!!!!!!! I LOVE YOU!!" Oh really? Huh. That's odd... because when I miss someone, I pick up the phone and call them. Weird. I don't deserve that. No one does. This scenario has been going on for... years... with one particular person. Poor Andrew has heard me say over and over again "I'm DONE with ___" and then a month later I miss her and call her. It used to hurt a lot when that person would come to the same city as me, be four blocks away, and not tell me until she was leaving. But after like the fifth time of that it started to be more of an annoyance than a pain. I do have to give this person props though. She was there for me and very encouraging during a very...trying... time in my life about a yeah and a half ago. But as I started to come to terms with that time, she started backing off again. I have not talked to this person since sometime in November. I don't know when I will talk to her again. Unless something tragic happens, I will not be the one who initiates contact. I'm actually pretty proud of this. It's so hard of me to let go of people that I care about. I just really don't like doing it.

I wish I could say that this is the only person in my life like that. While not to that degree, she's not the only one. I don't understand how people can be like that. But we're all unique so I can't understand every thing everyone does.

Back to the title of this post. Today I looked at some people's facebook profiles and that used to bother me. I would see people post on their walls things like "it was sooo good catching up last night, let's chat again soon" and get upset by that. It upset me to see that while people professed to care about me, and miss me, and wanted to catch up, they just didn't have time for me...but they did for others. When I looked at the four people's profiles that evoked these feelings the most, I felt nothing. Really, nothing. And it was AWESOME!!! Don't get me wrong, I wish nothing but the best for these people... I just don't care about what they mean to my life. And my oh my what a sweet feeling not caring can be!!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

YAAAAAAAYY!!!! Congrats!!!!

My friend just surprised me with a picture of an ultrasound sent to my e-mail!!! I'm sooo excited for her!!!!!! She's about 9 weeks pregnant, and due in February!! I just did a little happy dance at my desk!! I can't really say much to anyone about it because, 1) she hasn't told many people and 2) doesn't want to tell many people until a little later.

But I just wanted to say I'm super duper excited!!!!! And I'm going to have to make another trip to see another baby soon!!!!! YAAAAAAAY!!!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

F/U on Dinners

Last night I was preparing my lunches for the week, I want to start taking salads because I feel like in the past couple weeks my eating habits have been odd. I was put on an antibiotic to get rid of this lame-ass respiratory infection, that if taken on an empty stomach could give you some serious pains. I also have to take this pill 12 hours apart... so I first took it at 1pm.... then waited up as long as possible and took the other one right before bed. I've been slowly adjusting the time I take the pill, but it's always NOT at meal time. Which means eating right before bed, or when I'm not hungry. So I feel a little rounder than normal. Anyways, I wanted to bring salads to lunch this week, so I bought a head of lettuce and last night was shredding it into small pieces and putting it into sections to bring to work. Andrew comes out into the kitchen and was sooo excited to see the iceberg lettuce. It was all he wanted to eat! So I mentioned that I was planning on making some tuna salad to take to work with it and he almost started jumping up and down like a school girl! Ok, he didn't really, but he was really excited. So I whipped up some tuna salad, and that's what we had for dinner. Iceberg lettuce and tuna salad. Easiest dinner I've ever made!!!

Although now I have no lunch...

Monday, June 22, 2009


This weekend DH (Dear(est) Husband) and I were bickering about something... I don't remember what it was, but somehow we started talking about dishes. DH mentioned that he didn't like having all the dishes that always seem to spring up when I make dinner. I always seem to use some sort of pot/pan/big bowl that can't be put into the dishwasher and are often difficult to wash in our sink. Which brings me to another point. I HATE our sink!!! Hate hate HATE it!! It's white porcelain (who thought that would be a good idea?!?) and it's a double sink. Sounds nice, but it's actually terrible. While it's fine for washing silverware, or cups, or small dishes... I can't even fit a casserole dish in one side of it! I have to wash my cutting boards at an angle, which inevitably means water will get all over my clothing and the floor. It seriously is the WOAT (Worst Of All Time). Next house we get must have 1 bowl and if it has a double sink, that bad boy's getting torn out before we even move in!

Back to what I was originally saying... Andrew doesn't like that we always have a ton of dishes to do every night and said he'd actually be fine with pb&j for dinners. Soooo yesterday I bought bread, tuna, and salad stuff. Guess what we're having this week for dinners?!?! Sandwiches and salads!!!

We'll see how long I can last on that diet!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Nolan Michael Dowaliby - Always in our hearts

Today is the memorial service for Nolan Michael Dowaliby. He was born at just 26 weeks on June 8th. He fought hard and strong for three days, but sadly lost the fight on June 11th. His mom Ashley has asked us to celebrate his life instead of mourn his death. That little boy really touched more people than he or his family could ever know! I've shared his story with friends and family and I know I'm not the only one! Today, all of Nolan's Nestie Aunties all over the country are celebrating his life by wearing red and navy blue, because those were his favorite colors. If you would like to read about Nolan's story, visit Ashley's blog. I must warn you though, Ashley speaks from the heart and you can really feel your heart breaking right along with hers. I have been following the story for a little while now and I've felt happy with every bit of good news she received, sad by the bad news, and of course devastated by the end of his short life. I highly recommend everyone read it.

I would like to ask that if you read this, please say a prayer for the Dowaliby family. No parents should ever have to go through what they are doing today.

Nolan will always be in our hearts. His three days on this earth were spectacular. He brought so much happiness to his mom and dad and to everyone who knew of him. And for that, today we should celebrate!!!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Cooking Success!! Kinda..

At our Philly AHR (At Home Reception for you non-nesties) I had the lovely pleasure of meeting Ada, a friend of my mom. She has been a friend of my step-dad's family for years, but I only got to meet her just now. She's awesome! And soo sweet!! She bought Andrew and I How to Cook Everything as a wedding present (we hadn't even met and she got us a wedding present!! How nice is that?!?), and I must say, the book is amazing. It's HUGE and really has some great recipes in it! Last night I tried Arepas and mashed cauliflower.

Arepas are a South American cuisine that are quite simple and easy(ish) to make. Anderw and I were first introduced to them by our friend Maria, who is a native of Venezuela, at an amazing South American restaurant near us. I was hooked from the first bite!! It combines two of my favorite things...corn and CHEESE!! When I saw this recipe in the book I HAD to try it! The ingredients are very basic, I didn't have to go out to get anything! It's pretty much corn meal, corn, flour, salt and pepper, milk, an egg, and cheese. CHEESE! You mix all the ingredients together and fry them up. The first arepas we had were slightly different than the ones I made last night, but from what Maria tells me, these are more traditional than the restaurant version.

The reason I say that my attempt was *kinda* a success is because while I mixed all the ingredients together like a champ, the cooking threw me off a bit... The recipe says to heat up the oil to about 350 degrees over medium-high heat. Apparently my oil was way more than 350 because the last few rounds of the arepas were slightly burned... ok slightly charred... but only on the outside! The insides were still quite tastey! So yes, I am still learning! I didn't realize oil could be too hot really.

On to the mashed cauliflower. Another incredibly simple recipe that was a success! Kinda... The recipe consists of boiling 1 large head of cauliflower (I used frozen), mixing milk, butter, cheese and salt and pepper in a large pot on medium-low heat, then adding the cauliflower and mashing it. Well apparently the recipe is supposed to be the main course for like 10 people! I added the suggested amount of milk and cheese to the cauliflower and WOW was it soupy! I think I used the right amount of cauliflower for just Andrew and myself, so next time I think I will cut the milk in half, and not use quite as much cheese. I'll still use more than is probably healthy... Mashed cauliflower is supposed to mimic mashed potatoes in consistency (it's a low-carb alternative, although with the amount of cheese they said to use...I'm not so sure about that!). Well my version mimiced... well...soup! A very tastey cauliflower-cheese soup!

I would definitely make both of these again. I'm becoming more and more obsessed with South American cuisine (I haven't tried anything that I haven't loved yet!), however most restaurants specializing in this type of food are somewhat pricey!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Fail Blog

I have been laughing over this blog for the the past.... way too long! How did I not know about this before?!?! There is some seriously funny sh!t on this blog. We all know how much I love watching people fall down (as long as they don't get hurt of course) and there is noooo shortage of clumsy people here! Go check it out!

I'll be no one else

One of the best pieces of advice I've ever gotten regarding dealing with people was from Seventeen magazine (I was in like 8th grade, give me a break!) The article was talking about what to do when you're really mad at your best friend, but don't want to say anything mean or hurtful to them. The author suggested that you write down in a letter what you would say to them if there were no negative repercussions to your words, but don't send it to them. I tried it a few weeks after reading the article and wow, did it work! It felt like such a release to get everything down on paper and out of my head! So I think that's partially what this blog will be. In it's entirety, it's going to be more or less a dumping ground for random thoughts, pictures, oh and my friend gave me the idea of putting recipes up...I just got an AWESOME new cookbook and I'm trying out tons of new recipes! Oh and also, since the vast majority of my close friends unfortunately do not live within driving distance, this might be a good way to keep my friends updated on what's happening in Nicole-land ;-) Soooooooo, without (much) further ado, here's my very first attempt to join the world of blogging!!!