Sunday, August 31, 2008

I'm a New Mommy

So here is the latest reason that I have not been blogging......

Meet Pascal. My 3 month old Westie Poo.....oh you've never heard of a Westie Poo? Well it's a legit designer breed: His father is a Poodle and his mom a West Highland Terrier...hence Westie yes he is as adorable as he looks. What's with the name? It's French and snotty....I thought it would be cute for a male far so good....he's learning his name...sometimes we call him Prince....Prince little man.....

So when I left George Mason University, I vowed to get some work/life balance in my life. One of the things that I thought would assist that was getting a pet. I love animals.....especially domestic animals....they need us so bad! They depend on us to walk them and feed them and oh yes...LOVE the CRAP out of them. So i needed a pet to commit some energy and time to...and a reason to leave work before 10pm. One problem though.....I am allergic to dogs :( Woe is me. Yea I are thinking, "What the hell? You are allergic to dogs and you got one?" Let me tell you something life is too short to not enjoy the things you LOVE.....and thank GOD for Zyrtec....LOL.....but I also went on a quest to find a dog that didn't shed, was low in dander and good for people with allergies.....what came up on google? The Westie Poo....but they are not everywhere. I had to look for a reputable breeder...avoid puppy mills....and finance...yes finance getting this specific breed.

Integrity Pets was the solution. Check out the website....they are good people that answered all my questions and concerns about getting a dog from them. I have been communicating with them for 3 months...actually since Pascal was born and on August 23 I drove to the Raleigh/Durham Airport (which is 2 hours away) and I picked up my little man. Oh soooo worth it. My allergies are still affected but it is a SMALL price to pay for having him in my life. I mean...just look at him!:

SoI have had him for about a week and I totally forgot how hard it was to potty train a puppy ( we had a dog when I was in High School...shout outs to Topaze who is still keeping my mom company in NY!) But man, Pascals' bladder holds like 5 tablespoons...ridiculous and every two seconds I am running outside to pee and poop.....Jesus...then we come back in an he has an accident....I look at him like, "HELLO!!! we were just outside!!! what is this tiny spot of urine???" And then I remember....he's 3 months....if he was a human he would be wearing diapers! LOL......besides potty training and the occasional moment of insanity when he begins to chew on mommy's computer cord to sandals, he is a sweetheart. As I type right now he is curled up next to me...doing the puppy snore. He loves to cuddle and play....and pee's that life! He has toys, mommy keeps him clean....he has a clean bill of health from the vet and everywhere I take him EVERYONE says he is the cutest thing that they have EVER seen. He loves that!

Having a dog is not a game! It is a whole new line item in your personal, toys, crate, vet, medication (oh yea Pascal already has an ear infection...poor thing...:( but it really add to you life. I can't lay in bed all day...he needs me.....I can not work late...he needs me....and I think i really need him....sometimes just having another breathing and living body in the room makes all the difference.....oh yea....daddy LOVES him too....James plays with Pascal non-stop and while he's not trying to pit the dog against me, he can be found on the floor playing fetch and tug-o-war with his little man. Men love dogs and I have found that taller and bigger the man....the move love they have for the smaller and cuter dogs :)

Adventures in Pascal land continues....I will keep you posted....feel free to visit his Dogbook page off of my Facebook page.....yea...I'm that kind of owner.....and if you are in Charlotte, stop by and visit us.....Pascal has some kisses for you!

Get at me....

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Been caught up...IN THE OLYMPICS!!!!

Greetings all....You probably have been asking yourself the question, "Where is Michelle and her infamous blogs?" Well friends....I have been in the zone...the OLYMPIC ZONE! Every four years it just takes hold of me and I cannot let go....not to be confused with the Winter, no...only the Summer Olympics!! I LOVE THEM!!! I cannot get enough and ever since 8.8.08 I have been glued to the inspired that this blog is dedicated to the 2008 Summer Olympics in here are the Top 10 reasons why I adore the 08 Summer Olympics!:

#10-It only happens once every four years

You can watch sports everyday (especially guys who love ESPN), but you don't. You may catch the occasional basketball game or tennis match on TV but for the most part sports are on the periphery of our lives....then the Olympics hit. Athletes from all around the world prepare their whole life for this event that happens just once every 1,460 days. So for two weeks we are transfixed on these bundle of games that seeks to crown a world champion in various sports.....Most of the athletes that go to the Olympics will not even come close or have a chance to medal....but to be there...the be invited to go up against the BEST in the entire world....WOW! How can you not watch and get swept into the spirit of "One World, Once Dream"

#9 Olympics Theme music makes me cry.

You know the song.....the song NBC plays everytime to introduce the Olympics....I heart that theme music! Music has a way of evoking your spirit and stirring emotional like no other entity ans this theme music is right on the top of the list. I hear it and my heart flutters a little bit and I get automatically excited. By the way this is a real song: Commissioned by the 1984 Olympic Committee John Williams was asked to write a masterpiece that would be formally associated with the Olympics. What he gave birth to was “Olympic Fanfare and Theme"...if you need your soul awakened by this wonderful melody click here:

I don't know about you but when I hear this i get emotional and anxious about what is about to happen and the giddiness of the Olympics spirit is palpable!

#8 Opening CHINA one does it like the Chinese.....really. With a budget of over $100 million and 15,000 performers and not one was nothing short of fantastic! Simply stunning to watch, full of "how did they do that" moments and well worth the 4 hour production. No host country before or after will be able to compete...I feel bad for London do you top that? how do you top the opening sequence of 2,008 drummers beating ancient golden drums in unison? I could go on and on.....but if you saw know what I was great and got me in the mind set of GO CHINA!!!!

#7 M.Phelps

What can be said about this man that has not been said already? I watched every single event he swam and I yelled and cheered at the tv urging him on! Swim Mike!!! Swim!! His unwavering commitment to be the best in his sport, to bring his sport the notoriety it deserves, his quest to not only smash record but send them to a place where no one else could reach them....his never ending schedule, not resting with just ok....never giving up to the end.....I love me some Phelps!!! Half man, half dolphin....I love him! Can we take a second on speak in what was probably his best and most magical win?: Phelps' victory in the 100-meter butterfly was perhaps his most stunning of the Games. Trailing early, Phelps came back from seventh place to out-touch Serbia's Milorad Cavic by 0.01 seconds and tie Mark Spitz's record with seven gold medals in a single Olympics. Did you see it??? It was AWESOME!!! and sooooo close.....with the naked eye you could not really tell who won! Even his mother thought he got second....take a look at how close:

If I was Cavic I would kick myself really hard for letting this slip through my fingers literally...he got lazy and coasted to the wall....while Mr. Phelps took and extra volleyball coach in high school always said, "Finish Strong!".....never truer words were spoken! Kudos to Mike and everything he has accomplished. He has inspired me to do so much better.....set goals...achieve them.....finish strong!

#6 Gymnastics

What a cool sport!!! These young ladies are amazing ...yea so what if the Chinese team is like 12 years old.....they are some talented middle schoolers!! LOL....but seriously to be a gymnast you have to commit your entire body to the sport...they make it look soooo know it is one of the biggest highlights of the game.

#5 The Olympics makes me workout harder

I watch the games and then I go to the gym and push myself just a little but more....I think, "if these Olympians can push can I even if it is just a little a little longer, perhaps faster...lift a little more....push the an extra set on my triceps....the spirit of the Olympics lives with me in the gym!! Maybe...secretly I am in training for the some distance event? Hummmm.....

#4 Usain Bolt

Call him arrogant if you want , but my God! This man can run! Not only can he run.....he makes that other runners look like little boys....craziness!!! This Jamaican sensation is unreal...shattering the 100meter dash and he didn't even go full speed to the end!! What is that??? Is her SuperMan? Half cheetah.....whatever it is, it is talent and here is the joke...he's only 22....he has time to be bigger and better and to mature as an fine wine.....what will Mr. Bolt bring to London....i will stay tuned to watch every second of it!

#3 You can watch anytime of the day!!

Gotta love time zones!!! You can't sleep? Not a problem! Turn on the TV and there has to be some Olympic event going on!! it could be equestrian or team handball or synchronized is always on which keeps you invested in what is going on. At work I would keep visiting the website to see if our medal count had changed....i knew that somewhere a match was being played and I wanted to know the results....28 sports, over 10,500 athletes participating, and 20,000 media outlets broadcasting it around the world! Like 7-11....they are always on and the action is always hot!

#2 The whole world watches

It's like American Idol or Desperate Housewives that only American ENTIRE WORLD watches the Olympics....because almost everyone is represented. All across the world in bars, gyms, homes, and clubs families and friends gather around tv's a root on whomever in what ever sport. What other event brings the world together? War maybe? I will take the Men's 10m platform diving any day!

#1 I think down deep I want to be an Olympian!

Don't we all? Let's start training today....We may not make it to the big stage, but we can try to go for the GOLD in out own our relationships, career, wants, and dream. We can embody the un-relenting drive and spirit to be the best. Let the inspiration of the Olympics propel you to your own victories....see you on the medal stand!

Get at me....

Saturday, August 2, 2008

It's been a long time...I shouldn't have left you....without a dope blog to step to...:)

Greetings and Salutations ALL!!! I must apologize for not dropping a blog or two or three on you....So much has happened and I will try to give you a taste of what has gone down and where I am now.....consider this a series of mini blogs within one big blog :) Enjoy!

Bloomington is wonderful this time of year!!!
So when we last left off I was in an airport heading to Bloomington, IN for UIFI which is the Undergraduate Interfraternity Institute. This is an intensive 5 day program for undergrads in fraternities and sororities from around the country hosted by the NIC. Students come expecting just another conference but they actually get a whole bunch more and I gather to think 90% of UIFI graduates change, focus, and are are inspired and motivated to change their worlds. I should know.....I'm a former graduate circa 2001.....and look at me NOW!!!

So when I was asked to serve as a small group facilitator (which in the Greek Life advising world is kinda a big deal) I was pretty excited! The students get a lot out of it, but the professionals that attend to do the facilitation get so much more. I was reminded of why I do my job...why I love Greek Life soooo much and what I continue to fight for. I'm not sure where Greek Life got sooo far off track (ie: the drinking, the hazing, the not living up to values and principles of the organizations, the bad imagery) but I am committed to getting it back on track and I met about 90 students at UIFI this summer who are committed to the same. One part of the curriculum that REALLY stuck me and actually made me tear up was the Ben Comen story (here is the me, take 7 minutes and watch it ) after watching this clip the students really reevaluated what courage really meant and for me...well let's just say I am finished running my race and I have started all over again to help others finish :) the'll get it!

UIFI was really great and I spent time with some amazing students and professionals....oh yeah....there was a lice infestation in the house we were staying in. Talk about FREAK OUT!!!! Girls crying, guys shrugging their shoulders, facilitators trying to maintain calm demeanors while having our own personal melt downs....for some time is was chaos and we brought out the Lice Shampoo in the city of Bloomington....i have to say that I did not use the lice shampoo...cause i couldn't...i have dread locs...and hence you can't comb they stuff in....i was freaking out and checking my scalp every ten seconds....fortunately I didn't catch it! (only 7 students ended up getting it) But let me tell want a good example of group think here it is!!! There is a case study in this situation for ya!!! Shout outs to UIFI Session 8-Zeta Upsilon....we made it and we are better for it!

This way to AVENUE Q!!!
On Friday, July 26th I went and saw one of the most amazing, funny, thought provoking, and fantastic musicals with my sorority sisters. I saw Avenue may have heard about it..or is a small synopsis from Wikipedia:

Avenue Q is a musical conceived by Robert Lopez and Jeff Marx, who wrote the music and lyrics, and directed by Jason Moore. The show was produced by and opened at the Off-Broadway Vineyard Theatre in March 2003. The production transferred to Broadway in July 2003 and won several Tony Awards, including the award for Best Musical. It is still running on Broadway and holds the position of 27th longest running musical in Broadway history. A U.S. national tour began in July 2007. The show is largely inspired by (and is in the style of) Sesame Street: Most of the characters in the show are puppets (operated by actors onstage), the set depicts several tenements on a rundown street in an "outer borough" of New York City, both the live characters and puppet characters sing, and short animated video clips are played as part of the story. Also, several characters are recognizably parodies of classic Sesame Street characters: for example, the roommates Rod and Nicky are versions of Sesame Street's Bert and Ernie, and Trekkie Monster is based on Cookie Monster. However, the characters are in their twenties and thirties and face adult problems instead of those faced by pre-schoolers, thus making the show more suited for the adults who grew up with Sesame Street. The characters use profanity, and the songs concern adult themes (except the opening number). A recurring theme is the central character's search for a "purpose."

Hands down this musical was great!! It made me think about my own life...the absurdity of some of my actions and what college used to be like...i started yearning for those four glorious years at bills, no worries, no rent...sigh....two of my favorite characters in the whole musical were the 'Bad Idea Bears'....A duo of adorable but sinister teddy bear-like characters who are out to get people by getting them to do irresponsible deeds. The boy is blue and the girl is yellow....think about a cross between the Care Bears and and Chucky.....HILARITY!!! Let's just say the Bad Idea Bears were around ALOT in they got me in trouble....I still can't drink Tequila :( ...but yea, Avenue Q put that all in is written in a very smart way and it is unpredictable, which keeps you on the edge of your seat. Several times during the performance I caught myself saying, "I was not prepared for that!!!" My sorors Antie, Alyia and I enjoyed it immensely and Antie and I even caught dinner before the show at an AMAZING Mediterranean fallafel I have ever had!!! It was all very girls night out and those times are to be cherished.....that musical reminded me that we grow up so fast and we should take time to enjoy each other in the present.

Fridges, and Ranges, and Washers.....OH MY!!!
So the hour of owning my first home is upon me. I close on my house on August 29th and I am scared shitless!!! There is just way too much to do: decide on final paint colors, move out of my apt, pray that someone rents it so i can stop paying rent and break my lease, finish paperwork with my mortgage lender, secure homeowners insurance, pack, figure out if i should forward mail....again, transfer cable/Internet, utilities, and on top of all of that.....WORK MY REAL JOB!!! head is add insult to injury I am getting a dog...yeah, a dog...all paid for and 3 month old Westie Poo who I am naming Pascal is scheduled to be delivered to me a week before I close....PERFECT timing right!? I am looking forward to having him.....but dear lord how much could I possibly pile on my plate.....did I mention that August is the BUSIEST month for any campus administrator....this might be ugly :(

So last week me and James (ok...I'm dating someone...his name is James....yea I know I haven't blogged about it....SUPRISE!!!'s new and I like him....that's all I'm sharing for with it..:) ) where was I, oh last weekend James accompanied me to buy appliances for the new house.....needless to say I freaked out a little. Buying appliances is a daunting first I thought I just want it to look pretty....I want people to walk into my home and say "ooooooo" and "ahhhhhh" when they see my stainless steel appliances that are all high end and crap.

Well that didn't fit into the budget and then one of my mentors informed me that just cause it's pretty doesn't mean it will then I got on Consumer Reports to find the perfect appliances that are efficient, cost effective, and won't break down anytime soon....ummmm yea....Consumer Reports can make your head spin....especially if you are buying appliances for the first time and you have no idea what you should even be looking for! So by the time I got to Lowes I was a mess...i just knew that I could not walk out without some stuff....I mean I debated not getting a fridge at all and just getting a big cooler with ice and keeping my eggs and organic soy milk in it.....and no need for a washer cause I could just wear my clothes in the shower and wash them as I wash my body....GREAT IDEAS!!! so much....reality set in and here I was, speechless in front of Blaine (the salesman at Lowes) gripping James's hand for dear life. It was a complete blur but when I emerged I was the proud owner of 5 new appliances, and 3K poorer.....yikes!!! But it is an investment and I own them out right which is huge....James had a good point...he said if i ever come upon hard times I could sell on of my appliances to float me along....LOL....that made me chuckle....You know I prayed for alot a things this, man, dog...and in a span of three months I got all three.....I guess I prayed a little too hard.....God has a funny sense of humor....I guess I should start praying for some sanity....LOL :)

Hope you enjoyed the overview of some of the most significant things that have happened in my life over the last couple of weeks.....sorry for the one massive blog....I promise to be better in the fact I got my next blog brewing in the brain as we speak. I'm BACK friends!!! I'm BACK!!!

Get at me...