Friday, December 24, 2010

The Season of Photography

Life has been crazy busy over the past couple of weeks. With the wedding moved up to February 12, it's been a marathon of tasks to get invitations ready and out the door so that we could sit back and enjoy the rest of the holiday season. December 12th Jeff and I journeyed down to Nashville to spend a day together enjoying the festivities and decorations at the Opryland Hotel and to do a photo shoot with the fabulous Caitlin Denman, one of my favorite photographers and extraordinary local talent. That night a shiver of a storm started up and we had the great adventure of taking some amazing pictures in some chilly and lively, snowy areas of downtown Nashville. It was a blast to share that time with Jeff and Caitlin, and we have some amazing documentation of that night to smile back on.

After being snowed in and a lovely stay at the Che Ashley a la Bowling Green, we returned to Lexington and started putting together everything we needed for the invitations. Along with a heap of help from some fabulous ladies, we got ALL of our invites addressed in ONE night! I am so beyond thankful for their help, it was something I was honestly dreading doing by myself.

With Invitations completed and sent out, we are on a roll with this wedding, and you can keep up with important information via our wedding website:

A couple of days after the super romantic and fun shoot with Caitlin, my family had the wonderful pleasure of working with another fabulous photographer locally based in Lexington. Marissa Noe is extremely talented in family portraits, I like her filters and angles, and I was glad to have her with our family to document our affinity and humor for one another. Mom wanted to be sure to get pictures with everyone before she lost all her hair, and I am thrilled with the results that I've seen so far. It's been a rough year, and especially month, and it was great to capture a happy moment on camera to keep us reminded of what's most important. Make sure to leave a comment on Marissa's blog, if we get enough comments, she'll throw in a free print for us, and I can't express just how much I love free stuff... especially when it's great quality :)

I sincerely wish a truly happy and warm Christmas to all of you. Make sure to keep those who you love most close and to express your love and appreciation to them often.

Much Love,

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Some Trials Try You More Than Others

My life has been very full, and very busy as of late. I've been able to develop a wonderful and deep relationship with an amazing man who treats me like royalty, I have been blessed to find employment while I work on improving myself, I have a brother who is preparing to serve an honorable mission in Mesa, Arizona for the next two years. The Lord is blessing me in so many ways, it only stands to reason that he's going to present me, and the people in my life equal opportunity for trials and growth.

My mother was diagnosed in the past couple of weeks with a Glioblastoma, which is an extremely aggressive form of brain cancer. We caught it by accident, because we took her in thinking she was having stroke like symptoms. As she stands, her life expectancy is 2-4 months. Because we caught it, and she's a candidate, they are going to perform a craniotomy next Friday, which has the potential to extend her life up to a year.

A lot to digest? It certainly was for me. After a weekend of bliss with the man of my dreams, it certainly grounded me back to Earth without any padding. Jeff and I had originally planned on a May wedding, but with the information about my mother in hand, we made the ultimate decision to push the wedding forward to February so that she would be able to actively participate and enjoy her daughter getting married. The entire concept has been slightly overwhelming, but I have been amazed with all the people in our lives that have stepped up to make this happen, not just in a simple and sweet way, but in a big loud and amazing and lavish way.

Really, my family and I are so grateful to those who have been supportive and ever present through this ordeal up until this point. I am so touched to see the generosity and selflessness of others, and it is reassuring to know that there are people in each of our lives that will be there in such a dire situation when you need them the most.

Its going to be a tough time ahead, and I'm still processing everything, and trying to move forward. I just wanted to let everyone know the situation, and to thank those of you who have been so awesome to me and my family. We appreciate you more than words can express.

I also want to thank my dear, dear fiance, without whom I would not be so put together and functioning. He has been my rock, my comfort, and my voice of reason. I am eternally grateful to have such a solid companion and outstanding man as my future husband. Thank goodness I got to him before someone else figured out how amazing he is.

Have a Sunny Thanksgiving!

After spending Thanksgiving day with my family in Kentucky preparing food, eating food, napping after food, and good conversation and games, Jeff and I set out for Florida to spend the weekend visiting his family and friends in the Tampa area.

We spent each day bouncing from house to house spending time with each person, catching up on lost time, meeting for the first time in my case, and enjoying the time together learning about Jeff's youth and time before his arrival in Kentucky.

 After a particularly long day of toggling between relatives and friends, we ended our adventures with a makeshift picnic on the beach. Comprised of the most amazing Gyros you will ever, EVER eat ( cross my heart, hope to die), blankets and sand mats, and a cloudy but lovely sunset, it was a relaxing and perfect ending to the busy day. After consuming my weight in Greek meats, I hopped up ( ok, wobbled and teetered up) and headed to the surf to frolic and walk off the fullness of the wonderful meal. Eventually Jeff joined me, and together we walked talked, snuggled and enjoyed the sunset and cool water at our feet.

After several minutes of playful joking, Jeff asked me if I really loved him. Not an unusual question, I was quick to answer in the affirmative. After giving me a funny look, he put his hand between us, on which he had a ring around one of his fingers. While he stumbled through his proposal ( nerves and it was chilly), I looked back and forth from his face to the ring several times, very caught off guard ( he'll tell you that I sounded something between a seal and dolphin), finally catching my mind and mouth in the same place, I assured him that I wanted nothing more than to marry his goofy self.

And there you have it. The sweet, simple, and perfect way my dear fiance asked me to marry him. If you want the embellished and highly entertaining version, you'll have to ask him. :)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Inside Jokes

Let's start from the beginning.
AT&T has TERRIBLE service. Sometime during August they lost service for Lexington for almost the entire day. When I got service back, I called Jeff back peeved. He reassured me that it wasn't a big deal. Trying to make a point, I said something to the effect of " I could have been on the side of the road, with a flat tire, and being mauled by a .... bear... in a tutu... and roller skates!" He laughed and told me to take a picture should it ever happen. It became a short lived inside joke:

We chuckled, admired my skills in the paint program, I told him to watch his back because you never know when it will happen to you, and moved on with life. Or so he thought....
Months passed, all the while I had been slowly gathering elements of the joke and a plan while letting the whole thing sit far back in his mind where he wouldn't think about it. Finally, this week, the opportunity struck. As he left my house to go home at the end of the night, he found a curious, and most terrifying intruder in his car:

Needless to say, he got a kick out of it, and is now well aware of the very real dangers that are out there waiting to attack the unsuspecting driver! Thank goodness he has a better service provider and was able to call me!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Howdy Stranger!

It's pretty sad when you have to happen upon your own blog by accident. It's been TOO long. I had stopped posting initially because life got hectic, I wasn't the happiest person and in turn I didn't want to write a blog that strictly reflected my pessimism, and eventually, I just got overwhelmed and forgetful.

SO much has altered in my life in the past few months. I had the opportunity to take a little trip up to Toronto, Canada in July. My father suffered from a nasty motorcycle accident, injuring himself in several places. I did not get rehired at my school ( which is the least upsetting thing to happen), I gave up my apartment to move back in with my family to help myself financially, and to support my family as my father makes his recovery. 

It's been difficult to understand why things happen, and all at once. I suffered moments of bitterness, frustration and anger. At times I'm still confused and how everything is supposed to come together. However, throughout all of this I've also had the opportunity to meet new people in my life and have been struggling to recenter myself and align my priorities in a way that is conducive to a positive, motivating and forward thinking way of life.  I made a goal previously to strive to look for the positive in all things, and as of late it's certainly becoming an easier thing to do.

Those who know me well know that I'm not one to frivolously dabble in romance outside the friendly chick flick. I've been a skeptic for a large portion of my adult life. I now feel like a sheepish hypocrite for making fun and criticizing those twitterpated couples, because I have now apparently crossed over to the dark side. I've met an individual that makes me feel 145% better about myself than anyone else ever has. He inspires me to improve myself on a daily basis, and does nothing but build me up. I have no idea where life is leading me at the moment, but with better goals and a sunnier disposition than I once had, I  am happily going along for the ride.

Here's to hoping for more frequent, positive, and relevant posts!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Save a Tree

Like most things I accomplish, doodling happens when I'm bored. I've always had a fondness for the Henna art form. I think it's amazing how intricate the designs can get and the symbolism behind some of the art. So, why bother wasting paper, when I can doodle on myself!

*Note: this isn't actual henna, just a really awesome liner from Sephora. :)

This Pretty Much Sums Up My Summer So Far

Dear Kindle,

I love you! Early on in life I learned to love to read. Inspired by mother, and several teachers, I developed my own interests and favorites and read voraciously up until high school. In high school and college I then fell out of love with reading. As stubborn as I am, I've never done especially well with being told what to do, and it was a new concept being told what to read and how fast to read it. I felt like the teachers had no taste in books, and none of the selections ever seemed to appeal to me. It got a little better in college, but I was so bogged down with text books and studying that if I was reading for pleasure I felt guilty because it meant that I wasn't doing what I was supposed to be. Enter my savior in reading: the Kindle.
I started admiring this quirky piece of technology from afar. Way out of my price range, it was difficult to justify any reason for buying it for myself. I started to wistfully talk about it with my mother the summer that I graduated as we planned our trip to Germany. Wouldn't it be awesome if I could take this handy little e-reader with us to have on the plane and in the car instead of lugging around books? In the end, I chose to abstain, and it was ok because the trip was jam packed, and I didn't do much reading anyway. The suggestion, however, was not lost on my mother, a fellow bibliophile.
Imagine my surprise on Christmas morning when I opened my gift from her and found the product of my ramblings from months before! It was beautiful! Sleek in design, and capable of holding more books than I could ever hope to read, it could fit with me anywhere and be pulled out at anytime! It's one of the swankiest gifts I've ever received to say the least.
This first year of teaching was a tough one. I feel like I traded my personal life and the people that went with it to the effort of keeping my career afloat. At night, I'd go home, and still stress about school. It was an unending cycle of worry. One Friday night, after a ridiculous week, I picked up the Kindle and started reading. I read four books that weekend. It was wonderful. I didn't think about work, I didn't feel stressed, my heart wasn't trying to book an escape, and I was at ease with my life. Naturally, I liked the way I felt, so I continued reading. Since January, I've read 35 books. I feel that I can say with certainty that that's the more books read than I read in 8 years in high school and college combined. I've slowed down recently simply because I've run through my list that had been building up over time, but I still keep it with me and pull it out whenever I can. At the park, at home, at the pool, you’ll find me reading away!

Dear reader, I need help: I’ve run through my reading lists. I need suggestions!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Aloha, For Now....

As those who know me are well aware, I was pink slipped from my current position. This year has been a whirlwind of turbulance, but has been a fantastic learning experience all the same. With the uncertainty of my next move, I made the executive decision that the rats could no longer stay with me ( I had a hunch that they wouldn't mix well with the cats).  I found a woman willing to take them, and the children decided to write her a letter so that she would know how to take care of them:

Dear Ms. Blythe,

Thank you for offering to take care of the rats from now on. We would like to tell you some information that we think will be helpful to you in order to take care of our rats.

First, their names are Petra and Piper. Petra is a hooded rat, and looks just like the picture of the rat you sent! Petra can be shy, and takes a while to get used to people. It took a long time for her to come out of her shell and hang out while we were in the classroom. Piper is a sandy blond color with a pink nose. Piper is a playful rat, and if you ever leave the cage door open, she is the first to try to get out and explore the world.

These two rats LOVE to eat fresh fruits and vegetables! They also eat lots of different kinds of seeds and grains that are mixed together in their rat food. Their favorite foods include strawberry yogurt treats, carrots, star fruit, grapes, and apples. They will eat, but don’t like broccoli and celery as much as other vegetables.

There are a few helpful hints that we feel as a class may help you when you take care of these rats. They can get a little stinky, and Ms. Dickinson has to give them baths every so often. They aren’t crazy about it, and they tend to try to get away and squeak. They always smell better afterwards though. Also, don’t forget to clean out the cage! They make a big mess, and it gets smelly if you forget! They don’t bite people, but be careful, if you stick your finger into the cage, they might forget that it’s a finger and mistake it for a snack! Ouch!

We hope you take very good care of the rats, and would love to get an email seeing how they are doing some day.

Good luck,

Ms. Dickinson’s Class

Sunday, April 25, 2010

When you have nothing nice to say

I'm not going to lie. I haven't written lately because I don't have a positive spin to put on things as of late. Work has been a trial, and takes a lot of physical and emotional energy. Have no fear - I shall be back to my perky self in no time!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, March 8, 2010

When you smile, the world smiles with you

I fear the lull in my everyday life happenings has affected the frequency of my posts. The past couple of weeks have been long, arduous, and mundane. Luckily, when this happens, life gives you the opportunity to shake things up a bit!

I got to travel down to Bowling Green this weekend to spend time with dear friends and celebrate a birthday. There is nothing to cure a wondering mind like the clarity that comes with a quiet solo drive. The sun was warm and inviting, and the sky was clear and full of the promise of impending spring. I have always relished the drive between the two cities because of how pretty and landscaped it is, and because it's the only time I feel truly allowed to think without guilt. I thought a lot about where I am right now in my life, why I feel unhappy day to day, the blessings I'm grateful to have, and how I want to progress from this point forward.

I feel like I've been a Debbie Downer as of late. I hate when I get in these ruts. They are a part of the ebb and flow of my personality, unfortunately, and I am in constant search of ways to improve this about myself. The next month or two are going to be full of cliff hangers at work, and I'm making the conscious effort to be sunny and accepting of the path life is guiding me down. There are decisions I don't want to face, but the sooner I get on with it, the sooner I get to move on to bigger and better parts of life.

I hope everyone else is well out there reading... so... all three of you... :)

I just want it to be known that I am truly grateful for all of those who support and cheer me on. You are the positive force that motivates me to strive to be better. So... Go you! You rock! YEAH!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Thank you mr. President

Happy presidents day everyone! I don't know about you, but
I'm lucky enough to enjoy this snow drifting day off from work and in the cozy confines of my dear little home in the making. Origionally a good friend was meant to visit for the day, but old man winter put a stop to that. I wish her a safe and cozy afternoon inspite of our foiled plotting.
SJ came home today after a two night stay at Banfield for his neutering and declawing. The loopy kitten is readjusting with the new rules we have to follow for the next week and a half. His new collar is the least of his favorite in that list.

Inspite of hist discomfort we have spent the majority of the day snuggled on the couch watching quiet movies, watching children sled down the hill outside the window, and watching the flurries erase the evidence of their fun.
I'm also finally getting back to my reading list. Currently tackling some Alexander Dumas, a favorite author, on the kindle. All in all, lazy days are truly fantastic when done right.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Cupid' got nothing on us.

Some delightful ladies paid me a visit this weekend to help me devour some tasty treats and laugh through French cinema.

I love that I'm starting to feel more at home here, and love sharing my time here with agreeable people.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, February 12, 2010

Felicitous Retreat

As I promised before, pictures of progress of the personalization of my "cozy" little nook of an apartment. A little before and after action perhaps?

Dining area:






Living Room


 (Bedroom is still has a ways to go)

There is still A LOT of things I want to do, but bit by bit it's slowly coming along. :)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Snug as a Bug in a Rug

What a winter we have had so far! Apparently it's record breaking in some areas of the country, and we certainly are getting a bit of it here in Kentucky. Lucky for me, I'm a teacher and therefore enjoy the privilege of snow days! That's right, I get to enjoy the season with rose-tinted glasses, hot coca, pajamas, and furry purry cuddle piles on the bed.

Speaking of the felines in my life, all is transitioning well in our small little nook of an apartment. Repairs and painting has been going on for the last few days, and the two of them have been working very hard to stay out of peoples way. As hard as they try, they are still mischievous creatures at heart, and always manage to leave their mark wherever you look.


Unpacking of non essentials has begun and has been making progress thanks two the extra days off. Everything is officially moved in. Books are on shelves, and art is starting to appear on walls! I'm starting to love the place a little more each day, and bit by bit it's look less like a sterile non-descript environment and more like a home inhabited by someone you'd like to meet. Or, at least I hope so. :) 

So, if you find yourself kicking at the ground with nothing pressing to do, feel free to stop by, stroke my ego and comment on the place, and give me an opportunity for human interaction. I'll be waiting... non - desperately, of course.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Home Sweet Home

This week was atrocious at work, and I'm just grateful it's the weekend!. Last weekend I had to be out of my old apartment and into my new one blizzard or no! It was a bundle of stress and everyone involved is glad it is done and over. My new place is... a step back I guess you could say from where I was. It's a lot more money to live on your own, that's for sure! That aside, I'm loving the independence, coming home to more furry and agreeable roommates than before, and having a space totally my own to run, decorate, and use as I choose. This morning the women in my family came together to help overhaul and clean the place ceiling to floor because the previous tenant left it less than say the very least. It's now a sanitary and much more comfortable place to dwell in. Over the next week or so I plan on turning attention to homier touches, artwork, and arranging. Pictures to follow !

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Moving Day

I sure know how to pick the perfect day to move... more or less. The original idea was to get two teams of people helping move stuff from my apartment and from my parents house simultaneously. Didn't quite work out like we planned. Last night brought inches of snow and below freezing weather, and in the interest of keeping people safe, we called off the cavalry. I still have to be out  by Monday, so Tyler, my dad and I set out this morning to at least get the apartment on Broadway cleared out. I've never been wetter, chillier, and so worn out! Thank goodness I have such a patient family!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

The Story of SkippyJon

Okay. There are a few bits of general knowledge that everyone should know about the author of this amature blog. The first is that I'm a teacher. The second, is that I've had an undying love of children's literature that started at a very young age and has only grown stronger as the years have passed and my experience has increased.
I first was aquainted with SkippyJon Jones in Bowling Green a couple years ago as a student assistant in the public library. At the time, the branch I worked in was a beautiful old train depot that had been converted into a library and event hall. In my romantic little mind, this was the most perfect job I have ever had. In my job, I got the priveledge of previewing  books before patrons did, and had spent many an hour shelving book after book. With all that time and books in my hands, I absorbed so much knowledge and constantly discovered new favorites. One of them happened to be a clever series of books about a young siamese kitten who mistook himself for a chihuahua and embarked on several quippy and hillarilously written adventures. It's a great read aloud series, extremely loveable, and undeniably cute. I myself developed a small pension for siamese cats.
Time went on, I finished college and started my first job. Of COURSE one of the first read alouds I ever did for them was of my favorite literary gato. The more I thought about it, the more I wanted a little kitten of my own, but my current roommates were hard core dog lovers and felines were strictly out of the question. Just as my hopes were to be dashed, fate took a step of intervention on my behalf and provided me an opportunity to move, and meet the furball of my dreams.
An aquaintance of mine happened to know someone that had taken in a litter of siamese cats and their mother. Apparently the breeder was going to put them down because they had developed a rather nasty case of unchecked ring worm ( google it, it's totally non lethal), because they were no longer worth anything to them. She took the initiative to start medical care for the crew and soon they started to get their health back. She couldn't take care of them all, and so I was offered one at a muy muy cheap price ( to cover medical costs). A couple visists to the vet, and skin wipes later, the little fluffernutter is in perfect health, all his hair is grown back and not a single flake is to be found. He's my little rescue kitty, and the entertainment of the household.

Moral of the story? Read SkippyJon Jones, then come visit the real thing...and bring cupcakes.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

An Apple a Day....

SJ is growing fast and hard! Every day he manages to find something new to get into, something else to hide in the black hole vortex of kitty knows where, or another way to rope the other cats into playing with him. As frustrating as his toddler period is, he's still the most affectionate and adorable creature on Earth, and has a melting effect that gets him out of trouble with out fail each and every time.

This past weekend we went to the vet for his booster vaccinations and check up. The first two times we had been were easygoing and he seemed to handle the situation with a little uncertainty but nothing worse. This time was another ball game. The smart and ever alert Skipito was on his guard this time, after the pokes of the last visit and was not about to let them do the same thing without a small protest. In the end he conceded and we were on our way out almost unscathed. Just as we were getting to go, however, the poor dear got sick, reacting to the dewormer. He ended up having to hang out for a few more hours, get a few more unwanted shots, and them exhausted, went home. I was supposed to follow up with baby benadryl twice a day for the next two days... this was what resulted after the first dose. Needless to say, that was the first and only.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Every Day is an Adventure

I've had a pretty good start to my adult life so far. I've had bountiful support from friends and family every step of the way both emotionally and financially, and have been blessed in spite of myself. I have the amazing opportunity to obtain a job in a time when it has been difficult for most. I've also been blessed to be in a position of independence. Now, this has come in stages. As of next saturday, I will for the first time in my life be able to say that I am completely and totally independent financially in my life. I will be moving into an apartment all on my own, devoid of any roommates!

I've had my moments of gripe over having to share my living space with others, but I cannot deny that each individual that I've shared a dorm/apartment/house with has taught me more about myself and how to interract with other people in this world than anyone else ever could. I appreciate each and every one of them for the lessons they have taught me. I'm going to miss ( in theory) living with someone else.

Have no fear though. I will not be totally alone in my new phase of adventures. As those who know me well are well aware, I am a sucker for animals big and small. Over the past year I've picked up a few oddballs here and there and have collected what I like to call my dainty menagerie. A truly odd and potentially disasterous mix; I have two fish that have been named and renamed (they don't seem to mind) thanks to friends and roommates, two animated and attention grabbing pet rats that inhabit my quaint 3rd grade classroom( see adjoining blog), and two darling cats that will share my living space with me. I'm never with out entertainment, affection, or company with this crew. I look forward to the next phase of my life as it unfolds, and sharing it with friends, family, and the animal kingdom. Stay tuned.