Sunday, November 23, 2014

A Weekend Wrap Up Except it's Not About the Weekend per Say

I asked Nate a minute go, "Nate, should I blog?" and he said, "If you want to," so then I was like, "What should I blog about?" and he goes, "my sh***ing habits." So then I was like, "What if I actually blogged about your sh***ing habits, would you care?" and he laughed a funny laugh and said no. I'll spare you though, so don't worry. I won't blog about Nate's sh***ing habits.

Truth is, I have nothing really to blog about. This weekend was pretty low key and relaxing; the kind where I didn't put makeup on even once - which is a good kind of weekend I think. But in an effort to start blogging more habitually I felt like maybe I should come up with something anyway - hence the asking-Nate-for-blogging-advice intro paragraph. I should know though not to ask him for blogging advice. Like, I don't even know why I did that actually. So the rest of this is just gonna be like a, "whatever comes to mind first" sort of post. Apologies in advance.

I will say though, I did get something accomplished this weekend. I woke up early on Saturday and......went running. I know, queue gasps and horrified facial expressions. I'm trying (once again) to get into this running thing. I hate it and it makes me uncomfortable, and I have really bad knees but the reality is, it's cheaper than a gym membership or to outright purchase a cardio machine of sorts, so running (or slogging more like) it is. I started using the Couch to 5K app and so far so good. I've only finished the first week though, so ask me again in like, two weeks and see if I haven't given up yet. I got out to the canal behind my house Saturday morning and it was brimming with people walking their dogs, running, and riding bikes. I'm like, "So this is what the people look like who don't sleep in until 11am on a Saturday."

Saturday afternoon ASU played (and won) their last home football of the season and upon its conclusion, so begins Hate Week...
Arizona State and Arizona play their rivalry Territorial Cup game on Friday. Truth is, I don't really hate anyone and I really don't get into all the shit talking cause quite frankly, I'm a terrible shit talker. If you hurl an insult at me the worst you'll get back is probably like a, "Yeah well...yeah well.......I mean,...." and so on and so forth. I have a lot of friends that went to UofA and I appreciate that the shit talking gets kept to a minimum. Outloud anyway. I mean, I talk shit in my head all the time, I just don't verbalize it (insert winky face emoji).

You know what I accidently did the other day? I broke my own Instagram rule and I accidently posted two alcohol photos back to back. I try not to do that because I feel like it's a bad look. But when you're enjoying $4 frozen sangrias one weekend and then the next day you're at happy hour with your girlfriends, you can't really not Instagram it right??
Patios and fireplaces and red wine are a few of my favorite things for winter in Arizona.

Here's an awkward picture of Gunther and I.

Here's a picture of Gunther and I snuggling.

And here's a picture of Maycee pretending like she wants to snuggle but really she's just begging for breakfast and Gunther's in the background all jealous cause Maycee's getting more attention than he is.
And so concludes the dog portion of this blog post.

You know what - I love being an adult. Like, I love being done with school, having a good paying job and on the right career path, having fur-children and a husband and blah blah blah. And for as much as I feel like I'm an adult, when my mom tells me I have to bring a dish to Thanksgiving dinner in my head I'm like, what the hell do you think I am??? An adult??? Like in my head I'm still a child and Thanksgiving is something I participate in, not something I contribute to via bringing a dish of sorts. I'm like no, I don't do Thanksgiving. I just eat it. Please don't make me cook. I tried to reply to the family email with a joke and then the next time I saw my mom she's like, "Ok but what are you bringing?" and I tried to brush it off and make another joke, and then the next time I saw her she asked me again, "SO WHAT ARE YOU BRINGING TO THANKSGIVING?" ...I'm beginning to think she's serious. Ugh, adulthood sucks.

Anyway, that's probably a long enough blog post full of things that aren't important so I'll stop there. Normally I would conclude this post with some sort of complaint that tomorrow's Monday but hey, we only have to work for three days this week so yay! That is indeed something to be thankful for. Hooray Thanksgiving!  

 photo Carissa_zps53ecb502.png

Sunday, November 16, 2014

I Can't Stay on Top of Blogging Anymore so Here's What's Been Happening Lately

I was paying bills this morning and I got to the bills that were due on 11/17 and in my head I was like, "OK good I still have time before those need to get paid"...and then I looked at the calendar and realized today is the 16th. But seriously, WHERE did November go?? I was just on here catching up on all my October stuff and now all of a sudden we're in the latter half of November. I feel like I'm sucking at life lately and it's just flying right by me. So bear with me while I go through yet another "here's what I've been up to lately" post.

Halloween came and went and my dogs were as cute as ever in their Halloween costumes:
You can't really tell but Gunther is a lion and Maycee is a zebra. I'm kidding you can totally tell Gunther is a lion right?? Like, was he not BORN for that costume?? And was he not born to stand atop of Pride Rock and rule over the kingdom with Zazoo at his right hand and Rafiki as his wise and noble counsellor, as he watches all the animals perform a rousing rendition of I Just Can't Wait to be King??? I think so. I think he was born for that. Although Maycee probably wouldn't let that happen cause she's the alpha B in these parts and I'm sure she wouldn't let anyone rule over her, let alone Gunther.

Anyway, you know who is ruling my headphones/CD player/iTunes these days?? None other than Ms. T-Swift herself cause her new album dropped and it's the most fantastic thing I've laid my ears on in a long time...figuratively, that is; I mean I can't physically lay my ears on anything seeing as how they're attached to my head in such a way.
I just feel like all you T-Swift haters need to just give in and admit she's good, cause this album is just so dang good and there's no other way around it. So good in fact, that I use the word "good" twice in one sentence. That good, OK?? One of my best friends Kayla and I waited all day and met up after work to go buy the CD together at Target (cause why download from iTunes when you can get bonus tracks and polaroid pictures when you purchase the hard copy??). We then proceeded to get dinner at Chick-fil-A, took it to-go, and ate it in my parked car so we could listen to the whole CD all the way through.
Cause that's just what you do when Taylor releases a new album. On top of that, Kayla and I scored our tickets to Ms. Swift's 1989 world tour coming to AZ next summer!! Countdown to August 2015 has begun!!

Ok, moving on from T-Swift madness...

If you live in AZ in the east valley - have you been to The Perch?? If not, drop what you're doing right now and go. Well maybe not now per say, I dunno what their Sunday hours are; but go tomorrow for happy hour or something, cause this is my new favorite spot and I just know you're gonna love it as much as me.
It's all outdoors and has a rooftop lounge-ish area (which is perfect for the AZ weather this time of year) and they specialize in craft beers and food. They atmosphere is just fantastic and they have live birds that they've rescued in cages around the dining area. It sounds maybe a little weird but trust me, it's not. Now go.

One of the reasons I didn't have a chance to blog last week (or the week before) is because work has been so cuh-ray-zee busy. We just finished up (for the most part) our annual audit and it's been so stressful. Like, work 12 days in a row with a crap-ton of overtime hours kind of stressful. So Friday when I finally got off work and put these last couple weeks behind me, I celebrated with wine and mac and cheese. Cause I deserve a whole box of mac and cheese to myself and a bottle of red wine for all that overtime right??
I thought so too.

You know what else I deserve?? And everyone for that matter? Everyone deserves a huge bowl of fro-yo that you overpaid for because you put so many dang toppings on it. That's what Brianna and I did last weekend. And it was definitely worth both the calories and the cost.
Fit fam y'all!!

You know what else is worth the cost? Frozen sangria swirly alcoholic drinks in huge glasses.
I went out to lunch with my mom and my sister this weekend and my sister was like, "Are you guys getting a drink?" and I was like "No probably not; I had wine last night and I haven't had breakfast yet (cause you know, I slept until 11am)." But then my sister and my mom proceeded to order drinks and so I couldn't be left out right?? We ended up a little loopy at 1 in the afternoon - which means it was a successful Saturday.

So other than that, that's what's been going on around these parts. Nothing terribly exciting (except for the Taylor Swift tickets; that is terribly exciting). Hopefully the last half of November will include more blog posts than the first half. Hopefully.

Happy Monday friends!

 photo Carissa_zps53ecb502.png

Monday, November 10, 2014

My Soldier

How many times are you allowed to recycle a blog post? There's probably an unwritten blog rule somewhere that says like, "never"...or something. But whatever. I recycled this post last year and I'm recycling it again because it's my favorite post I've ever written. So I'm posting it again. Cause I love it so much. And I love my husband so much. 

.....................................

Today we celebrate Veteran's Day. My husband is a veteran: Operation Iraqi Freedom/Operation Enduring Freedom from 2007-08.

A while ago I went to an Eric Church concert. I know you're probably thinking "and these two go together, how??" but stay with me...

At the Eric Church concert he sang his song "These Boots," and if you haven't heard it...Google it.
But he sings about his pair of boots and all the places they've been, and what they've seen over the years, and it got me to thinking about my husband's boots. His Army boots. And all the places they've been and things they've seen.

Those boots were laced up every morning for over a year, to run missions all day that lasted well into the night, often times through the night. 

They carried an extra 100+ pounds of gear, and withstood the heat of the Iraqi summers.

Those boots have been dusted with the sands of Tikrit and the dirt of Mosul. They've walked along the gravel near the Tigress River. And they sat crammed next to bunch of other boots on a C-130 for hours to get there.

Those boots stood next to both Iraqi forces, and young locals; all in the name of a better Iraq.

Those boots spent Thanksgiving and Christmas, and rang in the new year overseas.

Those boots were there, on the floor of Saddam Hussein's mother's palace, when Nate was planning our engagement.
  
Those boots have seen a lot, heard a lot; most of which, I'll never know. But those boots came home on the feet of my husband...alive and in one piece.

These days, those boots spend their time in the mountains of Arizona, chasing deer and elk, and anything else that has four legs. But they come back home at the end of each day. Just as they should.

Thank you to all those who have served, and are currently serving our Country over seas.

"Honor the fallen, thank the living"



 photo Carissa_zps53ecb502.png

Sunday, October 26, 2014

October Stuffs

Hello, friends! 

Firstly, before I get any further I just want to say...take a peaksy at the new blog look eh? It's pretty fancy right?! My dear friend Jennica from Strawberries and Wine is giving my blog a face lift and we're still in the middle of rennovation. So bear (bare?) with us while we're under construction for a little while longer mmk? Can't wait for the final product!

Anyway, now that I got the monster that was my vacation to Harry Potter World out of the way and all blogged up (if you missed it check it out here and here), I can finally resume my regularly scheduled blog posts. Not that my blog posts have been "regular" around here by any means, but I really really wanna try and get back to some consistency again. So here's some fun things that've been going down in C Town these days. ....get it? cause I live in a town that starts with the letter C? And my name is Carissa Townsend? C Town? See what I did there? It's a pun.

Now that the weather is finally starting to cool down (albeit, only a little. Like, a teensy bit) here in AZ, it's time to open our screen doors and sit on patios and take the towels off the leather seats in your car. Hooray! I've done two of the above so far. Sorry but the sun and 90 degree afternoon heat still makes for realllly hot black leather seats in my car. But I did open my screen door last week to enjoy some cool morning air...except that the neighbors got a cat and it likes to sit in the window sill and Maycee, conversely, does not like it to sit in the window sill.
And so she stares and she barks and she growls and barks and barks...and then I have to close the door. So thanks for that, Mace.

One of my favorite spots to hang out and drink wine and feel all sorts of fancy is this place called Postinos. It's like, indoor/outdoor, except now that it's not 115 degrees it's mostly outdoor. So Kailey and I spent a good Friday night there eating bruschetta and drinking wine by the candlelight. It was romantic, I assure you.

Speaking of wine...some of my besties, Charlene and Sarah, and I had a wine night recently that included not only wine, but dogs. Lots of them. Four of them, to be exact.
A lot of the night sounded like this:
"Joey no!"
"Henry come here!"
"Maycee be nice!"
"Gunther that's enough!"
"Henry get off of her!"
"Joey drop it!"
"Gunther don't pee on that!"
...But really, we wouldn't have it any other way. Dogs are the bomb.com. Especially ours. And they had fun, and we had fun and wine so it was a win-win, really.

I don't really have a good segue way for this one, but Nate killed an elk this month and now I have two freezers full of 239 lbs. of elk meat.
Yay meat!

Speaking of meat...just kidding, that would be a weird, and borderline inappropriate segue way. But speaking of friends! We'll go with that. Speaking of friends, one of our best friends was in town after getting home from an overseas deployment and we were fortunate enough to spend some time with him before he went back home to South Carolina. So "the quad" was reunited yet again! Been quadin' it up since high school yo! ...sorry, I'll stop talking like that.
We engorged ourselves on chips and salsa and tacos. Many, many tacos.

One thing however, we did not consume was pumpkin. Cause what good would a pumpkin be on Taco Tuesday? And while pumpkins weren't consumed this weekend either, the were however, carved. Ugh, can you tell I'm having a hard time with these segue ways tonight?? Whatever. What I'm trying to say is Nate and I picked and carved pumpkins this weekend. There I said it.
And it was fun.
We went to a local farm where they have a pumpkin patch and a fall festival each year, with things to do and all those good fall-ish things. I did notice however, as I looked around Nate and I were like, the only adults there without children. I started to feel a little awkward when we went to pay the $3 to get in and I'm like, "two adults please" and the cashier kind of kept looking at us like, "aaaand?" Nope. Sorry, just two adults thanks. I can't help it, I wanna ride the tractor ride and pet the animals and eat the kettlecorn and pick the pumpkins like the little kids get to do. Kids get to have all the fun and they probably won't even remember it in two years when they're 8 years old.
Also, I think I might've taken my all time most favorite picture ever of Nate this weekend. Like, frame on your bedside table, kind of favorite. Like, print it and put it up in your cubicle at work, kind of favorite:
It doesn't get better. It just doesn't.

When I was trying to think of a caption for this picture for Instagram I said to Nate, "Are your feelings gonna be hurt if I tell people you're not sweet?" And he said, "What feelings?"
And we laughed and laughed and I thought silently to myself, "didn't think so." The guy's a realist, what can I say.

So anyway, we took our pumpkins home and carved them all out and finished with these bad boys:
Nate's is "Black Widow" and mine is "Electric Bill." I wish I could take credit for that pun but that's actually what the package of stencils named him. I told Nate that even though his pumpkin looks better than mine, mine has a better name. So there.

So yeah, that's my October stuffs since I got back from vacation. Halloween is this week and while carving pumpkins is fun, dressing your dogs in Halloween costumes is even funner. That's right I said funner. That's how fun putting costumes on my dogs is - fun enough to invent new words to describe all the fun.

Woo yay Fall things!

 photo Carissa_zps53ecb502.png

Sunday, October 19, 2014

The Most Magical Place on Earth Deserves a Better Title Than This: Part II

If you're having Quidditch problems I feel bad for you son, I got 99 problems but a Snitch ain't one.
There's no other purpose for that in this post other than I just really wanted to lead off with it. Cause you can't tell me that's not a good pun.

Anyway, the last time we talked I told you all about part one of my Harry Potter adventure in Diagon Alley. So now I'm gonna try and tell you all about part two: Hogsmeade.
From the moment we stepped off the Hogwarts Express and entered Hogsmeade Mosby and I knew it was going to be just as magical and awesome and fantastic as Diagon Alley. And it was. However, don't let the above photo fool you - despite the snow on the rooftops it was still really warm. And humid. And I'm from Arizona and we don't do humidity. But maybe it's winter year-round in Hogsmeade?

While Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley have different shops for the most part, the main difference in the two is that in Hogsmeade you'll find the mecca of all things Harry Potter: Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
The castle is actually the main ride in Hogsmeade, and while you wait in line, it winds you through the castle, and the pictures on the walls move and talk and float between frames, and you meet Harry and Ron and Hermione in the Observatory and it's just a good time all around. Although, if I were describing Mosby's and my trip to Harry Potter world, "just a good time all around" would probably be the understatement of the year.

Besides the castle ride there's a couple other small roller coasters to ride within Hogsmeade; one being The Flight of the Hippogriff.
Mosby and I rode this one over and over because the line was never more than 15 minutes long and quite frankly, it's a hoot. The first time we rode it I just laughed and laughed because I dunno, fun things do that to me...uncontrollable laughter. Plus, on the way to the ride you can make a pit stop at Hagrid's cottage and say hello.

The other cool thing about Hogsmeade is there's a small stage where they have shows every so often throughout the day. We were fortunate enough to catch the introductions of the gentleman from the Durmstrang Institute and the ladies from the Beauxbatons Academy of Magic for the Tri-Wizard Tournament (cough, book #4, cough cough).

The food in Hogsmeade is at none other than the Three Broomsticks. And just like the Leaky Cauldron, it was nothing but impressive.
More important than the food however (or maybe not, I do get really cranky when I'm hungry), are the drinks. And Hogsmeade knows how to do drinks. Just because you're on vacation doesn't mean you don't need a Happy Hour. So we Happy Hour'd (that's a verb now, I just made it up) at the Hogs Head just like Harry and Ron and Hermione.
If I lived in Hogsmeade all the time, the Hogs Head would be my spot. It's where all the cool kids witches and wizards go and well, if I were a witch at Hogwarts I'd like to think I'd be one of the cool ones.

After the Hogs Head we decided to cruise up and down Hogsmeade one more time to make sure we didn't miss anything.
One of those "things" being some dessert from Honeydukes. Like maybe some Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans? You know, the candy with flavors like Sardine, and mashed potatoes, and phlegm? 
Fortunately I didn't get any of the aforementioned flavors. Fortunately.

When we were finished at Hogsmeade we took the train back to Diagon Alley in London...
...and not until our second day at the parks did we notice something just outside of Diagon Alley...
Grimmauld Place! Headquarters of the Order of the Phoenix (cough, book #5, cough)!

Eventually our two days at the parks came to end. But we made sure to see and do everything in both Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley two and three times over; like laugh hysterically on The Flight of the Hipogriff, fly all over Hogwarts on my Nimbus 2000 via the ride in the castle, and escape from Gringotts bank on the back of a fire breathing dragon...with no seatbelt. I feel like these posts really don't even do it all justice. It truly takes you to another, more magical world! We stayed until the park closed on our last day and watched the sunset both in Orlando Florida, and on our time at Harry Potter world.
 And a fantastic time it was.

Sunday was Harry Potter recovery day. So after the late service at Mosby's church we nursed our Harry Potter hangovers with some blood orange mimosas and Sunday brunch.
After that, the jeans came off, the sweatpants came on, the hair went up, and we stayed horizontal as long as we possibly could as we watched (you guessed it) Harry Potter movies all afternoon. They tell you when you're super hungover to drink beer the next morning right?? So this is kind of the same thing except with Harry Potter instead of actual alcohol.

After another solid morning of sleeping in, and one more round of sushi for lunch on Monday, it was time for me to fly back home to AZ Monday night. I hate when the thing you've been looking forward to for months and months finally comes to an end, but alas, so is life. Flying across the country to hang out with someone I met on the internet is something I never ever ever pictured myself doing, and I know it's really weird and creepy for outsiders looking in; but this is hands down, the absolute best thing about blogging: meeting people and building relationships that will last a life time! Next time, see you in AZ Mosby!


 photo townsend-sig_zpsd6f7a124.jpg

 

design + development by fabulous k