Monday, January 30, 2012

Sometimes I'm Scholarly

     Our date last week was joyful- we stopped at Starbucks for a cafe mocha and a frappuccino for the boy and then drove to a park to stargaze. With our new-found astronomy knowledge thanks to our lab, we located Orion, the Pleiades, and others that I forget because, well honestly, it was really cold and we had Miss Pip with us. I would have loved to have actually taken pictures, but again, it was really cold. And dark. And did I mention it was cold? We snuggled for a bit and then headed home to chose this weeks date: Visit the Cummer Museum and Gardens! Except now we may have to reschedule because this week has gotten quite busy. I'd like to be able to make a picture-heavy, thoughtful post for every date, but sometimes life just gets in the way. (But isn't this what it's all about? Making sure we have such a wonderful time in real life, together?)

     Anyway, I wanted to post a link to another blog I'm contributing to for my Placing American Lit class. Our focus is on ecocritism and the environment in, as the book title so perfectly says "environmental writing since Thoreau." My first post is about our Week Three date! Click here! Go forth and read! The other authors are all students and their work is nicely done. Hope you find this interesting and informational. Here's a picture of Pippa to make you smile in case you think ecocritism sounds boring:

One ear sticks straight up, but the other hasn't popped up yet!
Now to finally make dinner... XO.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Pretending to be a Journalist

     As you've probably seen, UNF is hosting the Florida Republican Presidential Debate tonight. I, as a concerned citizen, decided it was my duty to act like a total tourist and take pictures as I walked back from my class, which was sadly not canceled. I'll admit I never even saw a single famous person and I could be there right now but would rather stay home with Pip, but still... don't burst my excited-about-UNF bubble. Swoop!
CNN sign on our Student Union, where they were doing interviews and (as I heard on CNN) the candidates makeup.
Press area, and behind this sign was the security and metal detectors. As Taylor and I walked away we heard two officers discussing protesters and students, saying they needed to keep everything tightly under control because there were already groups of both forming.
News news news!
Being a goober and getting my face in the picture. You've gotta have some proof right? I wanted to see the big CNN bus, but we had to get home to let out Miss Pippa.
Fourth floor view of the press vans and the Boathouse, where they're doing more interviews.
Well, back to watching the debate on TV, doing homework, and cuddling with my puppy. Please, no commenting about politics- I'd rather talk about tea and cookies and what you're doing this weekend. XO.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Week Three of the "52 Dates of 2012"

Find a pretty park in the city.
Friendship Park, Jacksonville, FL. The colorful pipes are what run the fountain, which was among the largest and tallest fountains in the world when it was built in 1965.
      I woke up this morning, so comfortable in my bed, to Taylor telling me how beautiful a day it was. A beautiful day for the park, he told me, sunny and warm. Our third date was an easy one. Find a park, go to it, enjoy. To my great surprise, he had already picked out a park by the time I awoke (and also fed the puppy and took her out, how lucky am I?). After a delicious sausage pinwheel breakfast, we headed out to the downtown area. The fountain has recently been redone, and is known for its amazing light show at night. It was extremely blustery and had gotten cloudy by the time we arrived, but was wonderful nonetheless. 
Juan Ponce De Leon, looking quite regal.

Making wishes in the fountain. Yeah... that's my wishing face.

I think these signs are absolutely brilliant. I've always wanted to visit every single one on a coastal road trip one day. (Also, Jacksonville was called Cowford?! Haha.)
This dress is perfect, except when you're down by the river and it's windier than the Hundred Acre Woods and there are other people around... This, my dears, is the reason I always wear cute underwear.
     We ended our date with a trip to Whole Foods and my-oh-my is ours massive. It's the biggest one I've ever been to at least, and even Taylor admitted he liked it. Taylor and I had tuna Greek salads for dinner and I bought blood oranges for dessert. I've never had them, but they just look so thrilling. He's downstairs watching the Giants game right now, so I've got to go either congratulate or console him with blood oranges and leftover cupcakes. We'll choose our next weeks date later tonight. XO.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Week Two of the "52 Dates of 2012"

Build a fort and read stories with a flashlight. 
Cuddling and reading Child of Faerie, Child of Earth
     Our second weekend of Twenty-Twelve and our first date jar pick was a success! We had some tea for breakfast, looked at English Major Armadillo memes, and then commenced the fort building. We read poems and a story and just cuddled for a little bit. A very nice Sunday morning, if I do say so myself.
     Pippa even joined us and cuddled, then proceeded to eat our Date Jar after we had picked out next weeks date.
Date jar and Miss Pippa

Next week!
     Next week (Week Three): Find a pretty park in the city. We may use our astronomy assignment/date on Saturday as this one, since we'll be going out to the middle of nowhere for a dark sky observation. We haven't decided yet, but I'm excited either way.
     Also, slightly unrelated, we made an ah-may-zing meal last night. Pesto pasta with fresh baguette and lemon parsley tilapia. It was... so good, I can't even describe how good it was in words. Maybe just "mmmmm" and "yummmm" and "Oh my gosh I'm so full but I want more!" Definitely something we're going to put on our menu again and again.
So delicious!
     I (only sort of) apologize for making you drool. I can't top it tonight, so we may just be eating soup and cereal and normal college kid food tonight. We're also going to go out and see Beauty and the Beast 3D in theaters tonight (!) and I cannot wait. I've been singing all day today. That's after watching football though, which is coming on in a bit. All in all, it's a really good Sunday, and we have tomorrow off, too! XO.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The 52 Dates of 2012

Once upon a time, there lived a girl (me) and a boy (Taylor). They did a lot together, were rarely separated really, and liked spending time with each other, but they began making the same date night choices every week. Let's go to [insert restaurant we've been to a hundred times here], watch some TV, and then go to bed. Sounds good? Alright.

Two thousand & Twelve is going to be a year of magic, of love and newness, and of changing my ways to better myself. I want to relish in the delight that a new year brings, look at things from a different view, change my habits up and discover wonder around every corner. And because I'm selfish and need someone to hold my hand along the way and because I really love Taylor, I've involved him in some of this.

Introducing: The 52 Dates of 2012
The idea came to me from a few places. Firstly, I've been doing my own goal-like lists the last few years, and Taylor has loved helping me cross of 21 Before 21 items. Secondly, I was super inspired by Elsie at A Beautiful Mess and her 12 Dates of Christmas. I love the idea of pre-planned dates and the excitement of randomly selecting one. I tweaked it a bit so it would last all year, one date a week. Some of them are silly and simple (Write letters to our future selves), some of them are a little more involved (Order the fanciest drinks off the menu at dinner), and still some are things that we would normally do but are simply making them special (Go to the beach and take Pippa).

Taylor came up with 26 and I came up with 26, and I typed them up, cut them out, and placed them in a leftover mason jar I had from Christmas crafting. Every Sunday night, we're going to choose one date to have over the week. We've also made rules, like if it's expensive and we're broke or if we can't do it that week for some reason, we can put it back and choose again. The point isn't to be strict about it, it's to explore our town and our hobbies in a new and invigorating way that keeps us in love and keeps us from saying "I'm bored, what should we do?"
For our first weeks pick (!) I let Taylor do the jar pulling, since I had just finished cutting (and let me tell you, cutting out 52 little strips of paper is a lot more time consuming than you would think). The winner for this week is:

Build a fort and read stories with a flashlight! Ding ding ding! 
I'm really enthusiastic about this little project right now and hope that I can blog about quite a few of them. I've got class in a little bit and need to tire out Miss Pippa, so until next time my loves, XO.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

The Many Sleeping Positions of Philippa Rose

While it sounds like a lovely book title filled with romance, intrigue, and a little danger, it is actually just the fact about our little fluff-ball of joy we brought home on New Year's Day. Miss Philippa Rose aka Pippa aka Pipsqueak aka Pip, Pippy, Pipppppaaaa, rat chaser, Princess, pretty girl etc. loves to sleep. Most puppies do, but Pippa is different. She loves to sleep in the weirdest positions. Want some proof?

Everywhere we bring her, someone exclaims "Ohhhmygoshshe'ssocuteeeee!" usually in a baby voice, high-pitched and giggly. We took her to Petsmart the other evening and had to stop almost every aisle so someone could see her. They ask "What is she? She's just adorable, where did you get her? Is she going to stay that little!?"

Last night we headed to a friend's for a bonfire and made our way to an amazing restaurant that's open until 3am, Miss Pippa in tow. She was such a sweetie! We sat outside to eat and she sat in my lap the entire time, snoozing like no other. The people at the table next to us piped into our conversations over and over and eventually realized we had her. Guy-in-the-girl's-jacket, Girl-with-more-layers-on-than-necessary, and Klepto-stealing-things-from-the-restaurant-bathroom cooed and oohed and aahed over Pippa for probably 15 minutes, even telling me that they would love to steal her and take her home. Eventually, our waiter even noticed Pippa and laughed because we had been there almost an hour and he hadn't noticed her in the slightest.

Taylor and I are loving her immensely and are so happy to have her here with us. We started class last Wednesday and hated leaving her home alone even for just a couple hours. This week we'll have even more classes and less time with her, which may possibly make me cry. I know she's fine and well-taken care of, but I wish I could just keep her in my pocket everywhere I go. Yeah... I love this little furball that much.

Now to work on homework and whatnots for class, putting my little nose back to the grindstone. XO.