Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Jury Duty

Well, after having to reschedule twice, I did my job as an American citizen and showed up for jury duty. I went, but I was DREADING it! Jury duty lived up to the hype... it was horrible. I absolutely hate not knowing things. The whole time I was at jury duty it was a constant mystery.

When are they going to call my name?

Are they going to call my name?

Why did I not eat breakfast? I could be here for hours!

How many more games of solitaire will I have to play?!

Will I make it back in time to go to the bathroom?

Why did this weirdo just sit next to me?

MAN! They just let 50 people go!

Why am I moving into another room?

I wonder how many calories are in that muffin I just bought at the concession?

Why didn't I just throw the summons away and pretend I never got it?

I should have gone to the bathroom 10 minutes ago. I had time.

Is my phone going to die before I can escape this place?

What?! Our group is changing rooms again!

Oh great, a cop!... Oh, what did he say? I can go!!!! :)

Can you just imagine what happens when I get in a real crisis?

Monday, June 18, 2012

Dog Collar Overload

     I just got back from spending 5 nights at the lake. Minus my car almost breaking down an hour away from the lake and the $1000 bill to fix it, the trip was wonderful.
     I have been out of town on vacation for 11 of the 18 days that school has been out. In the few days that I have been home, I found my self cleaning, organizing, and  catching up on all my riveting shows (Teen Mom, Dance Moms, Love in the Wild... only quality television, of course). Well, in between loads of laundry, I decided it was necessary to organize the 3 "junk drawers" in our laundry room. I knew the drawers were dedicated to the cookbooks, Bailey's stuff, and the 12th Man Towels (knowing Kyle, you know they have a special spot in our house), but all 3 drawers where just a conglomeration of the 3 said things. I started throwing the cookbooks in the top drawer, Bailey's stuff in the second, and the towels in the bottom when I realized the absurd amount of dog collars that were making their way in to the 2nd drawer. Yes, we have in fact become those people that change the dog's collar on a seasonal basis. I'm just not sure how disturbing or awesome it is to have a dog that has 13 collars (and 3 costumes).
4 spring/summer collars, 3 Aggie collars for football season, 1 Texans collar, 1 hunting season collar, 1 Halloween collar, 2 Christmas collars
and I guess the new one she currently has on brings her spring/summer collection to 5

Bay, you're the coolest dog around!

Monday, June 11, 2012

The Girl Trip

     When noon rolled around on May 31st, my summer started! Although I had joyfully joined in on the inevitable summer countdown some time after spring break, I was a little sad to see the year come to end. This was by far my favorite year of teaching, and I just hope next year goes just as well! But, don't let all of that sap fool you, I was indeed ready for a break.
     As previously mentioned, my sisters, mom, grandma, and I had a trip planned. We left on June 1st- my first official day of summer. We spent three beautiful days in Washington D.C. followed by three chilly days in New York. In DC we enjoyed seeing all the typical first-timer sights, and in New York we kind of took it easy. In case you were wondering...

Day 1:
The first day of travelling, for me any way, is all about getting your bearings. We try and plan some low key things on our first days, and this day was just that... minus a whole lot of walking!
  • Tour of the Capitol- One of my favorite things we did!
  • Walk through the Library of Congress- One of the prettiest buildings I have ever seen!
  • Q&A Session at the Supreme Court- Interesting, but ruined by all of the 9 year olds asking irrelevant questions.
  • National Archives to see the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution- This was neat to see, but being that our feet, pants, and hair were soaked from the miniature hurricane that came through, we weren't all that sad to head back to our hotel and get into our warm jammies.
Day 2:
Day 2 started with a minor mishap on my part. We were supposed to start our morning off with a walking tour of the monuments. We were almost late to the nonexistent tour. Oops! I hadn't checked the tour website in a month, and there was obviously some rescheduling that I wasn't aware of. So, with a minor adjustment to our highly organized itinerary, our day played out like this...
  • Quick stop in front of the White House... a mandatory first-timer site!
  • A few hours spent at the American History Smithsonian and then the Holocaust Museum... and a very brief stint in the National Gallery and Air and Space Smithsonian.
  • The Lincoln Assassination Tour- One of the highlights of our DC trip! We had a fabulous tour guide who took you through the events and locations leading up to Lincoln's assassination! We didn't go in to Ford's Theater of the Peterson House, but it was amazing nonetheless!
It is inevitable that you walk a lot of vacation, even if you use public transportation, but I was curious to see how much we actually did walk. I wore a pedometer that day, and we apparently walked over 15 miles that day!

Day 3:
This was our "relaxing" day in DC.
  • Georgetown Flea Market- It has kind of become a tradition to scope out a good flea market when we are on The Girl Trips. It was a bit off the beaten path, but it was a fun couple of hours. I found a super cute necklace that was created from vintage pieces, my sister and mom bought some photography from a local artist, and my grandma found an antique mirror!
  • Shopping in Georgetown- After the flea market, we had brunch at Serendipity, and we proceeded to shop around Georgetown's cute main stretch.
  • Arlington National Cemetery- It might be shameful to admit, but I wasn't all that excited about going here. However, it was very neat, and I am glad we went.
  • Monuments Tour- Since our mishap from the day before left us without seeing the monuments, I found another tour company that took us for a twilight tour of the monuments. The Lincoln Memorial was my favorite, and I happened to run into some students and teachers from my school that were on their 8th grade trip!
The last 3 days of our trip were spent in New York City. Since this would be our fourth time in NYC, we were able to skip all the major touristy things and kind of lay low.

Day 4:
We arrived in NYC fairly early, and we were welcomed with rain and chilly weather.
  • Uptown Tour- We took the ultra-touristy double decker bus tour of uptown NYC. Overall, it was interesting and we learned/saw some new things, and I have no shame in admitting that we took a bus tour. :)
  • 9/11 Memorial- We had gone down to Ground Zero a couple years back, so it was neat to see the progress that has been made. They have built 2 fountains in the place of the twin towers. It was very inspiring to see.

Day 5: 
Hands down, this was the most care-free, random day we have ever had on The Girl Trip.
  • Today Show- My mom loves Kathie Lee Gifford and has wanted to stop by the Today Show for years. We walked down to Rockefeller Center from our hotel and waited only 10 minutes before my mom got a glimpse of Kathie Lee and Hoda. It made her happy. :)
  • Tea at the Plaza- Another tradition of sorts has been going to tea. We went to tea at the Ritz when we were in London 2 years ago, and it was so fun that we insisted on going while in New York. Our experience at the Plaza was so-so, but I guess we can check that off the list.
  • Shopping- We pretty much shopped and strolled the streets most of the day... fine by me!
Day 6:
Our favorite New York day!
  • Canal Street- Canal Street is were you can go buy cheap jewelry, scarves, and knock-off merchandise. It is kind of hit or miss, but we had a great time that morning and came away with a lot of cute stuff!
  • Greenwich Village Food Tour- This was one of the very best tours I have ever done. Our tour guide had the best stories and commentary, and we were taken to some of the greatest little restaurants and shops around Greenwich Village.
  • Chelsea Market and the Highline- I'm glad we went, but I wouldn't recommend this to anyone that is on a time schedule. There just wasn't that much to do or see.
  • Once- We went and saw Once that evening. It was fantastic, and it won the Tony for best musical (and other things) last night! 
All in all, it was a great trip! I was kind of sad to come home except I did miss 2 very important people.

     I am horrible at remembering or wanting to take pictures, so I will try to get those from my sisters... if I remember to do that. That would probably be more interesting than reading my ramblings.

    I must go now... I need to pack for the lake. I'm leaving tomorrow morning. Oh the joys of being a teacher and summer vacation!