March 2009 Archives

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Have you heard of  I had never heard of it until I recently joined the amazon affiliate program.  Apparently, it is a site very similar to

They are boasting the following features which seem pretty sweet:

  • free overnight shipping
  • free return shipping
  • 100% price guarantee
  • and 365-day returns window

They do seem to have a pretty decent selection, with some pretty decent brands.  I've had a good experience with zappos, but these guys might be worth a try.  What do you think? - Women's Shoes - Handbags & Accessories

The Philippines

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Two weeks ago I met someone from the Philippines and have spent a fair amount of time with him since then.  On Thursday he said that I should plan a trip to the Philippines and let him know when I was coming. 

I know next to nothing about the Philippines.  He gave me the names of some resort areas and I did some googling.  Man, is it beautiful. 

Boracay, Philippines

Puerto Galera, Philippines

Puerto Princesa, Philippines

In the words of Liz Lemon: I want to go to there.

Things I Love: Food Edition

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  • Most mornings around 11:30 I start to get hungry. I almost always eat a macintosh apple to tide me over 'til lunch.
  • Carrots. I've recently started munching on little baby carrots as a snack. Forgot how tasty those things are!
  • Peanuts. I love to snack on a few of these in the afternoon.
  • Cottage cheese mixed with some slices of peach. I saw a friend at work do this a while back and I've been eating it ever since.
  • Popcorn.  Butter flavor, of course.


  • [Diet] Coke. I like the taste of regular coke better, but I almost always drink diet.
  • Labatt Blue Light. If I am going to drink alcohol, this is almost always what I have.


  • 1 cup Bran Flakes with 1% milk. I eat this almost every morning. Yup, I'm totally lame (if you didn't know that already).
  • French Toast.
  • Pancakes.
  • Omelets. I like omelets a lot, but they have to be cooked just right.


  • Salad with chicken, tomatoes, croutons, parmesan cheese, and light balsamic vinaigrette
  • CafĂ© Steamers Chicken Basil
  • Half a sandwich with chicken, slice of american cheese, slice of tomato, and mustard.


  • Chicken Parmesan. Original favorite meal to have out at a restaurant. Still love it.
  • Chicken French. After a while I began alternating between chicken parmesan and chicken French at restaurants.
  • Shrimp Scampi. There is not much better than a well-made shrimp scampi.
  • HONERABLE MENTION: Tuscan Garlic Chicken from Olive Garden that I had the other night.


  • Chocolate chip ice cream
  • Strawberry-rhubarb pie. I made some awesome pies last summer with the rhubarb from my garden.
  • Marble cake with chocolate mousse filling from BJs. The first time I had this was at the pseudo baby shower the other day.


  • Twix
  • Dark chocolate m&ms
  • Starburts


  • Salt. I put this on almost everything - meat, vegetables, salad, etc.
  • Garlic

Related Posts:
Things I Love: Letter 'M' Edition
Things I Love: Winter Edition

On Turning 30

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Last month I posted a guest post by Gary in which he spoke about his thoughts on turning 30.  I have been 30 for 6 months now, and have yet to write about how I felt/feel about the milestone.  I figure now is as good a time as any to do it.

When I was 25, 26, 27, I started getting increasingly anxious about turning 30.  The main reason was I didn't feel I had accomplished what I had set in my mind that I would accomplish but the time the big day arrived.  I was feeling like my friends and colleagues were blowing by me in terms of what they were doing in their life.  I felt very stagnant.  What had I accomplished since I graduated college at 21?  I was still in the same apartment and at the same job (granted, a fairly good job) that I started when I graduated.  I wasn't in any sort of long term relationship.  Others that I knew that were my age were getting married, starting families, buying houses, getting promotions, switching careers, etc.  They were headed somewhere.  They were doing things with their lives.  I felt like I was getting older and was wasting what should be some of the best years of my life.  I had to constantly remind myself that everyone progressed on their own timeline and there was no set age at which things had to happen.  It took a lot to try and override all those preconceived notions of what my thirty year old self looked like.

Then things started to change for me.  I met my boyfriend in August of 2005.  We started hanging out in June of 2006.  And in September of 2006, less than a month before my 28th birthday, we started a committed relationship. Then, in September of 2007, on my 29th birthday to be exact, I had my offer on my first home accepted.  I finally felt like things were progressing to where I wanted them to be.  I was very happy in my relationship, and I felt proud that I was financially secure enough to buy a nice house in a nice area all on my own.  I felt better about my pending 30th birthday at 29 than I did at 27.

I recently hopped on the facebook bandwagon and noticed that almost every single one of my friends from high school that I found on there was married.  Most had at least one child, and some were working on child #2.  I also work with several people my age and am seeing the same thing there.  So I guess you could say that I am still "behind" a lot of others my age, but I am okay with it.  I am happy with the woman I have become and what my life is like right now.

I have a positive outlook for my thirties.  I have much more confidence in myself now than I did in my twenties.  I now have a much better feel for who I am and I am more comfortable in my own skin. 


 Check out a few other guest posts where other thirty-somethings share their thoughts:

Turning Thirty, by Mike

Turning Thirty, by Christina


And some favorites elsewhere on the 'net:

Outdoor Spring Cleaning

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On Saturday I spent close to 4 hours outside in my yard doing "spring cleaning".  There are LOTS of trees and perennial flowers in my yard.  Which means there are LOTS of leaves and general cleanup to do in the late fall and early spring.  There is one large area in the back which is particularly hard to clean up due to the way the landscaping is set up and all the foliage and branches that the leaves love to get stuck in and don't want to come out.  For the most part I enjoy getting outside and doing yard work.  The fresh air is good.  The exercise is good.  It does get a little overwhelming though, and I need to know when to call it quits for the day.

This particular Saturday my boyfriend came over to help.  At one point my little 4 or 5 year old neighbor trotted over to chat with us.  While he was there, I happened to ask my boyfriend if he knew where the large rake was.  Two minutes later the little boy is back with a rake from his house that is 3 or 4 times larger than he is.  It was the funniest/cutest thing I had seen in a while.  Then he runs away again and comes back with a much smaller rake and proudly announces, "My dad said it was ok for me to come over and help you!"  So I gave him a small little task to do so he would feel helpful and he did a great job.  Little kids can be so awesome.  I just hope my neighbor didn't get upset that his son was next door helping the neighbor instead of helping at home!

Here's a pic of my yard in mid-spring last year.  Definitely worth all the work  :)


Pseudo Baby Shower

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Tomorrow is a pseudo baby shower for a friend of mine at work.  It's not an official baby shower, with gifts and all, because this is her second child.  I've heard you generally only have a traditional baby shower for baby #1.  My friend is having daughter #2. 

I was the main organizer of the shin-dig.  It's nothing fancy -- 12 women, lunch and cake down in the cafeteria.  It's more of a celebration/send off than an actual baby shower.  This is the first occasion like this I have organized.  If you read my post the other day about being shy and plagued by social anxiety, that is probably not a surprising fact.  I've learned a couple of things though.  A: I am actually capable of organizing an event.  B: It's actually fun!  It feels really good to do this for my friend. She is going to be thrilled and I can't wait to see the look on her face when we all surprise her.

Last night The Boy took me shopping to buy a couple of small gifts.  I ended up buying a Miracle Blanket after much praise from the great mommy blogger Amalah.  I also couldn't resist buying 2 teeny tiny newborn outfits.  My friend was recently telling me she needed more newborn size things because her first child was well over 9 lbs and so she didn't buy many newborn size things and thus doesn't have much for this child who is expected to be a couple of pounds smaller. 


Amazon: Baby Shower Gifts

What are your thoughts on baby shower etiquette?  Is it ok to throw a shower for a woman who is having her second child?  Should the shower include gifts?

How you see yourself

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I often wonder how other people see me.  What do other people think I am like?  What role or character do I play within any given group?

I had a co-worker tell me earlier this week that I was good with people (or a people-person, I don't remember the exact phrase) and that came as a shock to me.  I see myself as very shy, reserved, quite, calm, an observer, a blend into the background type of person.  I am not very articulate and TERRIBLE at public speaking.  I get anxious in many (most) social situations.

This week, for a couple of hours a day, I was supposed to have a new employee sit over my shoulder and I was supposed to show him the ropes, explain certain processes, answer his questions, etc.  This kind of terrified me.  Terrified may be too strong a word, but I was nervous/uncomfortable about doing it, even though I've done it several times in the past.  It doesn't really seem to get any easier for me.

I commented to my co-worker that I didn't know why they chose me to be the one to assist this new employee.  His quick response was what I mentioned above.  It made me wonder if he was the only one that thought this, or if that was the general consensus of those around me.

There is a saying that goes, "what matters most is how you see yourself." Most people do care about how other people see them, what other people think of them. They want to make a good impression and to be well-liked. All that does matter, but what is most important is how you see yourself. This will directly impact how you act, what you do, what you can accomplish, etc. If you don't see your potential, or all the great qualities you possess, you can never reach your full potential. And, it will probably be a lot harder for other people to see those things in you as well.

I don't imagine I'm the only one that sees themselves differently than others see them.  Have you had someone make a comment on your character or personality that you were shocked to hear? When you look in the mirror, what do you see?

Nearly Complete Decorated Guest Bedroom

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Back at the end of December I wrote about a couple of home improvement projects I was working to complete. The finishing touches are just about done so I thought I'd post a few pictures of the nearly complete guest bedroom.  

First, for reference, here is a "before" picture of how the room looked when I first moved into the house.


If you missed my earlier post, you can see the lovely time I had removing this rose wallpaper here.

Everything is done now, with the exception of hanging the wall art. I'm still not quite sure where I want to hang the 2 pictures I have.




Comforter: Laura Ashley Meredith from Bed Bath and Beyond
Curtains: Ashdale Priscillas from JC Penney

Wall Color: Behr Canyon Cloud from Home Depot
Lamp: from Christmas Tree Shopps
Night Stand: from Marshalls

First signs of spring!

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I came home from work one day last week and noticed little specs of green poking out of the dirt up towards the house in front of the garage. My automatic reaction was a grin from ear to ear. I love spring and I love watching this stuff grow! This weekend I went out today and took some pictures from around the house of the early spring perennials. Each picture below can be clicked on to view a larger version.


magnolia tree

magnolia tree



all the twigs and branches i picked up from the backyard on saturday!

Spring seems to have come a little bit earlier than it did last year.  I took a look back at my older photos, and I was taking similar ones last year on April 10th. 

On a related note, here's a link to a nice gardening site that a friend of mine just introduced me to: You Grow Girl.  I also added that site to my new Links page.

Amazon: Home & Garden Best Sellers


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Yesterday was indeed much better than the day before. 

One of the things I like most about my job is the people I work with.  Yesterday was a perfect example of why.  I was over working with a co-worker and The Boy comes over to get me and says, "there is a time-sensitive item at your desk".  I was a bit confused and bit scared, having no idea what he was referring to.  I got back to my desk and found a Frosty from Wendy's sitting on my desk.  One of the project managers had bought it for me.  Out of the blue.  He had no idea I had such a bad day the day before, and I hadn't done anything in particular for him the last few days.  He said he just wanted to show his appreciation for all my hard work.

That's the best, isn't it?  It's nice to know you're appreciated.  And it's even better when it's out of the blue.
Today was one of those days.

I was crying at my desk before 9 AM.

I was exhausted.  I was agitated.  I felt completely hopeless.  I had NO idea what to do to fix the problem.  I had no idea how to talk myself back into a sane and stable human being again.  It was scary having almost no control over my emotions.  I like being in control. 

I am lucky that The Boy was there and help me through the day and I survived.  He was incredibly sensitive and supportive and helpful.  I am a lucky girl.

Tomorrow is going to be better.  Right?

Guest Post, Taxes, and the AARP

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1.  I have another guest post up over at Gary's blog.  This time I am going on (and on and on) about buying your first home.

2. I have had my taxes done for a couple of weeks now. I am expecting to get well over $2000 back from the government. I still haven't sent them in yet, though. I really should get on that.

3.  The American Association of Retired Persons is sending me stuff in the mail?  Really?  I believe I have at least 35 years until I retire.


Decluttering the basement

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Right now I am home visiting my parents at the house I grew up in.  They may be moving soon, from a house they have lived in for about 25 years.  My mom is a definitely pack-rat, and there is an ungodly amount of "stuff" down in the basement.  Last week I offered to come home and help them since it is really a daunting task.  I thought it would be nice for them to have an extra pair of hands, and extra motivation if the main purpose of my trip was to start clearing it out.  My parents have been extremely helpful in getting my house set up over this past year and I wanted to do something nice for them in return.  They had actually started this job a few weeks ago but hadn't touched it since so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to offer my assistance.

We spent a few hours down in the basement yesterday and made a large pile for recycling, a large pile for donations, and filled 5 very large garbage bags with old junk that are going out to the curb on trash night.  It was weird going through a bunch of stuff my parents have from their parents, and a bunch of stuff I had when I was little.  There were games, and fisher price toys, and several bags filled with stuffed animals, folders and notebooks from college.  There were things my parents didn't even remember they had because they were buried so deep.  If anyone is interested in antiques, I can probably hook you up.  Also, if anyone wants some of those old school really gaudy, large, multi-colored christmas lights that you put outside, we have some of those too!  :)

I inherited the pack-rat gene from my mom but still managed to get rid of a lot of unneeded things.  Some nice things with sentimental value will be kept, as well as a few small things from my childhood that could be passed on when/if my sisters and/or I ever have kids.  A little part of me is still scared that I will regret getting rid of some of the things. 

We are about to head back down to the basement now to do some more work, then I need to do the same in my house once I get back. 

It takes a lot of work to go through and declutter, but it is so refreshing once it's done.

Slumdog Millionaire

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Ayush Khedekar.jpg

Several weeks ago I heard about a movie called Slumdog Millionaire. At the time I thought to myself that it was a movie I'd like to see. Then, I sort of forgot about it. I actually really enjoy going to the theater to see a movie, but for one reason or another The Boy and I don't seem to get there that frequently. On occasion there will be a movie that one or the other of us really want to see, and then we'll go.

Just before the Oscars, Slumdog Millionaire was brought to the forefront of my mind once again. I looked it up and it got 94% on I immediately sent a text message to The Boy asking if we could go. He wasn't as excited to see it as I was, but said he'd go. So we finally go there this past weekend. I really enjoyed it. It was interesting, thought provoking, had an over-the-top love story, interesting soundtrack, was different than anything I had seen in a long time, and completely held my attention for the full two hours. I was incredibly impressed with the acting of the young kids who are actually growing up in the slums. It was a bit eye-opening to see those conditions. It's good to put things into perspective like that sometimes. It makes you realize how much you take for granted on a daily basis.

On the way to work yesterday morning I heard the d.j. talk about two of the really young actors. As you can imagine, now that the children have had a taste of the U.S. and Hollywood they are having a difficult time adjusting back to their pre-movie lives. The d.j. mentioned that the young girl was still wearing the dress she wore at the Oscars. The kids wanted to continue sleeping in proper beds rather than on the floor. They no longer felt like playing with their friends. It was a bit heartbreaking. I really hope those children are properly compensated for their work and not taken advantage of.

If you didn't catch it, the movie won 8 awards last Sunday. They include:

  • Best Director
  • Best Picture
  • Best Adapted Screenplay
  • Cinematography
  • Sound Mixing
  • Film Editing
  • Best Original Score
  • Best Song

You can purchase the movie and/or soundtrack from amazon via the links below, if you're interested.

Gary was kind enough to allow me to contribute to his blog so if you'd like to read my thoughts on choosing a career, head over there now.

New puppy, for my sister

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My sister and her boyfriend got themselves a new little puppy this past weekend.  I think it is the cutest little thing.  It's a maltese, which is a really small breed but I still like them.  I am not a big person and don't really like really big dogs.  If they can stand on their hind legs and put their front paws on my shoulders, that is too big!  The big ones tend to be really friendly and have great personalities but they also tend to shed and slobber a lot!  The slobbering is pretty icky and I don't want to have dog hair all over the place.

I am really quite jealous because I have been wanting a dog for a really long time.  When I was in my apartment I couldn't get one because they didn't allow them.  I also didn't want to leave a little puppy all alone for so many hours a day during the weekdays.  Now I have a house with a great yard, but I still can't get one because my boyfriend is allergic.  He has the usual allergic reaction to them but also has bad asthma attacks when around them.  I'd love to know if anyone has found a solution to this allergy/asthma problem.  Certain breeds?  Certain medications?  Obviously everyone's allergies are different but any suggestions to try are welcome.

She doesn't have a name yet, but I am voting for Molly.



About This Blog

Stories, advice, and random thoughts from a thirty-something female.

Many people in their thirties are dealing with common issues and concerns. Some of these include buying a home, establishing a career, starting a family, and dealing with aging parents. I will blog about all these things as well as other every day stuff as I make my way through this third decade of life.

You can read more about the author behind thirty-something blog on the About Me page.





About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from March 2009 listed from newest to oldest.

February 2009 is the previous archive.

April 2009 is the next archive.

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