thank you, westways…

i am not sure what you do with your issue of westways [you know the magazine you get with your AAA membership?]…sometimes i toss it, sometimes i leave it laying around, sometimes i look only at the pictures to see if i recognize familiar sites, and sometimes i actually peruse the articles. i am not sure what caught my attention in particular [since it has now made it’s way to the trashcan], but i do know i immediately googled what i found, sent out a text, and then made up my mind to try this place.

magnolia bakery.

according to margit, it is the nyc bakery made famous by sex and the city…who knew? well, i checked out the menu and surprisingly skipped over the cupcakes but instantly knew just what i wanted…peanut butter icebox pie.

today, we ventured to west la to get my watch repaired–or to drop it off to have the movement replaced–and i thought we should make the best use of our time on the westside. i had a mental list of places i wanted to go to or check out next time i had a day off and happened to be west…but nonetheless, all i could think of was this bakery that i had read about [and i thought it was all fk could handle of my explorations on the westside for today].

so off to the bakery we went…

and i have to say i love this place…i mean, who wouldn’t?
even though they were out of the peanut butter icebox pie [said it wouldn’t be ready for another hour…oh another excuse to come back to this place!], i managed to find several other options that i was pleased with.
banana pudding…the kind that would rival the likes of bobbie cooper any day [but i still have to side with my hometown lady].
key lime cheesecake…that i am saving for later but looks utterly delectable!
chocolate swirl cheesecake [my husband’s pick]…that we are gobbling up as i write.
yum!! i would definitely recommend this place…can you tell? think i should write a review on yelp now…

i even bought the shirt–or my darling husband, who knew i would love it, did–to prove it…

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branded.

it seems fitting to write a blog about college football just 1 week and 1 day shy of the start of the season [although i am well aware some schools will be kicking it off in what some would consider to be a vacation destination days prior…i say it doesn’t really count].
it seems fitting to write about something–something it seems, as someone from Ala-Freakin-Bama–have known from birth.

branded.
it’s not even a conscious choice…it’s made way before one is even aware that a choice exists.
it’s not even up for debate…as if one has a choice as to which outfit to wear home from the hospital [bama or auburn…duh!].
it’s one of the first words a baby learns to speak…Roll Tide uttered even before mama can only be seen as the makings of a die-hard fan.
it’s carried on and passed on from generation to generation…literally.
it’s likely to cause a rift if one breaks from the family tradition…as in getting kicked out of the family, or at least uninvited to any gameday events.

and i have been subjected to such branding…not that i mind in the least.

i was born to parents who both cheered for the tide
[my mom one time screaming/yelling so loud at the player on tv–encouraging him to run for the goal line–during an intense auburn vs. bama game that i threw my barbie up so high she hit her head on the ceiling, parts flying from the impact…we had to spend the next half of the game looking for decapitated barbie’s head while i was crying because i was so scared from my mom’s outburst],
to grandparents who supported the same
[the familiar bama trucker hat my granddad used to wear…in fact i cannot recall any other hat–save the one with his name on in–granddaddy would wear besides the numerous bama ones given to him, i am sure, by all us grandkids. and to this day, my grandmother will call me the day following a game so we can discuss it–both of us having watched the entire game, of course],
to family far and near who will utter their ROLL TIDE ROLL battle cry from numerous other SEC-bearing states [including wearing their SEC championship shirt into the WalMart in Tennessee on a busy Saturday just to incite all the vols].

it’s innate…really, i think it must be.

and this being said, it is a little different gearing up for college football–i.e., the SEC and more importantly, bama football–in southern california. the status updates on FB of all the high school games that started tonight, all the postings of what will appear on the jumbotron in just a few short days, the saban documentary [which is not playing anywhere outside the southeast–most important to me, nowhere in LA], ESPN training days [which i missed the first go around since i am so isolated from my tide family out here and will have to catch sunday night]…just a few things i miss out on [at least physically].

but i get by with the help of my friends–those on fb, margit [a fellow college football lover…and fan of the SEC, even if she did wear the longhorn in january], and my incredible husband who has been branded…not by birth, but by marriage.
check him out….
my incredible husband who has already entered the 2010 season into our calendars…on our computers and on our phones.
my incredible husband who already has a problem with both of our schedules for the first game day [that would be that we are both working…during the game!!].
and my incredible husband who will have no one unsure of my true identity…

branded, even from 2500 miles away from my beloved tide.

Proud.

Sometimes you do not meet the expectations of others…or even worse, yourself.
Sometimes you do not get the praise or the accolades you think you should…or secretly wish you had.
Sometimes you do not get credit for the process or how far you have come…only what is yet to be accomplished.

So, sometimes, you have to have pride in yourself, in your own accomplishments (or those of others) regardless of the outcome, the lack of recognition, or the standards set.

And that, I can assure you of I am…

perspective.

i have been stressed out.
i have been letting the little things get to me.
i have been sweating the small stuff.
i have been focused on inconsequential things as of late.
and it’s not to say these things aren’t important…
they’re just not worth getting so worked up about.

and i realized this.
i realized this late last night.
the realization followed a text message from a friend.
the realization of what is most important in life…and what’s not.
and i have had several such reminders today.

perspective.
the flooding in pakistan [and those who are stuck there…hopeless].
the realization your dreams may not manifest…ever [and the implications of that].
the boyfriend who is unresponsive…and the emotional roller coaster in which you find yourself on.
the world that you have known for the past 16 years crashing down around you.
the job that once seemed so stable…until you had to sit in on the lay-offs.
the house you thought was yours…but now no longer is.
the bills you once could pay…but now cannot.
the relationship you thought would last…but isn’t.
i’m sure the list could go on…but i would rather not.

it just puts things into perspective…

realizations.

i have had a hard day…
and with that comes much contemplation.
and with that comes many realizations.

i am tired…physically tired. and i am tired of crying today [or for the past several days].
i am overwhelmed…by life in general it seems the days of late.
i pursue excellence…and i don’t deal well with mediocrity.
i am really hard on myself…and have extremely high expectations for that which i undertake.
i make mistakes…many of them, although i don’t like to admit it.
i deal well with stress–in fact, i thrive on it…until i crash, usually after the dust settles.
i find it difficult to forgive myself…or offer myself grace that i so readily extend to others.
i am emotional…and i deal with those things i consider “big” things by expressing myself emotionally. in other words, i cry…a lot, sometimes.
i give all i have to something…oftentimes, at the expense of myself.
i am trying to embrace many of the unknowns and newness in my life…but seems i am failing miserably.
i have a hard time trusting…the unknown, when i can’t see the ending, other people.
i would rather do for others then have them do for me…and i don’t usually give in without a fight.

and i like to think that i am strong,
that i am capable,
that i can handle any and everything that comes my way,
that i have it all together.
but none of these statements are true…
no matter how much i wish they were.

welcome to fabulous…


so, my friends alisa+rich decided to take an anniversary trip to celebrate their 2nd wedding anniversary [woohoo!!] and they decided to come to LAS VEGAS! they asked if we would be able to meet them for a few days…i didn’t even have to ask fk, i just told him the days to ask off. and away we went to hang out in one of our favorite places with some of our favorite people.

we hung out, we showed them the sites, fk taught them how to gamble…at the quarter slots, we ate, we talked, we caught up, we traveled to the hoover dam, we cruised the strip, we walked the strip…just to name a few.

as we parted ways, alisa commented, “i think we needed this. it has been so much fun to hang out with another couple.” and i couldn’t agree more.
to hang out with someone who knows you so well.
to hang out with someone who you have known so long.
to hang out with someone like old times.
to hang out with someone with whom you can be serious with, be real with, laugh with, and have fun doing just about anything with.
to hang out with a couple that you adore.
to hang out with a couple that you+yours both enjoy and get along with so well.
to hang out with a couple who have similar interests, similar ideals, similar love for bama football.
to hang out with people you love and would love to spend more time with…on a more consistent basis.

until next time…