Monday, October 24, 2011

Learning out west

This past week I was lucky to go out to Scottsdale Arizona to train on one of the products my company sells. Gaggenau appliances. They blend very well with our Pedini Kitchens. I have been really looking forward to learning how to use them properly and of course cook.

So last Monday I hopped a flight out to Arizona to learn all I could and be treated fabulously while I was out there. Gaggenau products are incredibly engineered. They are hand crafted and made for people who want to get the best results out of the food they prepare. It was awesome to cook on them and have the advice of a real chef around to ask questions. The chef made braised lamb shanks and I can't wait to try my hand at it at home.  I may just have to come in to work and play around some more with them.

Going the distance

Last week was a very busy week for me, but it started with something that has become a fun past time for me running. I took up running in May and decided that to be official I needed to run a race. So I chose a 5k that seemed do-able and registered. Well I had a 3 week siesta from running with a bum ankle but was still determined to run my race. I had been out running again and finally made the 3 mile mark again. So Sunday I got into my gear, made a playlist and got ready. Eric was on the sidelines cheering me on.  I ran it in 40 minutes. I am proud of that before I hurt myself I was running 10 minute miles so I was pretty happy the results on my first run. Now it's time to find my next race. :)

Friday, October 7, 2011

If I had a scooter...

I would want this helmet.

I think it's a really great design. I'm not sure how safe it would be but very stylish.
It's designed by Daniel Don Chang. His website is full of cleverly designed ideas, but this helmet stole the show for me.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

This month is going to be crazy busy

I am really excited about this month. September ended with a bang. I took part of my NCIDQ test. I'm hoping I did well. I studied hard, and I am the only person I really know that has ever taken it so I wasn't sure what to really expect. So fingers crossed.

October began wonderfully. Eric and I along with his brother and girlfriend went to the Petit Le Mans race. It was so much fun. I had forgotten how loud the cars are, how amazing it is to see them driving 150-200 miles an hour. We also got to drive around a real test track. I got to drive a Mazda MX-5 and everyone else drove Mazda 3 S sports. It was really cool to be on a race track. I would love to learn how to drive like a race car driver. This was also my second manual car ever. I drive mine, but have never driven anyone else's. I was a bit nervous that I would stall it out in front of everyone. I  didn't. :) The race was great and I can't wait to go back next year. Maybe with a bike. The race track is huge and it would be great to get around on one.

That's photo from Autosport

Upcoming this week is an Airshow. Yeah for planes! Then my 5k, out to Arizona, and back for a wedding and a concert. This month is packed full.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Life is a bit repetitive lately

I feel like I have been doing the same things everyday. I revise for my test, go to work which in some ways is like more studying, come home study, cook dinner, repeat. Since I have a bum ankle I can't for the moment so I'm feeling a bit stir crazy. I didn't realize how much energy and happiness just getting outside and running in the city gives me until I couldn't do it. Good thing next week things start picking up. My test is Friday, then for the next month I have something going on until early November.

For now I'll leave you with something that inspires me. It has design, cars and a museum all in one. Love.
Zaha Hadid's Riverside Museum, Glasgow.

PS I think that little green car is a P50 you can see Jeremy Clarkson of TopGear fame driving one here.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Fantastic Fall

The sky is dreary today. It has been drizzling or mizzling all day. (*mizzle-my word for when it isn't drizzling just misting out). It feels however like fall finally. After a very hot summer it's nice to wear jeans again and think about sweaters. It also let's me bring out the two fall holiday decor items that I have. Other than some Christmas stuff this is it. The are from my Mom. She gave me a fall leaf with a little bird, and a large glass acorn. It makes me happy to see them and know that the season is finally changing.

Other than that happiness I have had my nose in my studies. My test is next week! I am anxious but excited about it. Tonight I have some more revision to do. 

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Study, Study Study get your brain in gear

I've been graduated from college since 2007. I've been working in my field about a year before I graduated. Balancing school and work was difficult but rewarding. I got to take the real life skills I was using at my job and put them into my school designs.  So what I'm getting at is that it has been a long time since I've studied for something.

I realized earlier this year that I finally had enough work experience to apply for the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) exam. After signing over my kidney I was accepted to take it. Just kidding not a kidney they just wanted a lot of information.

In short it means I know my stuff and can design a space that people can exit safely in case of a fire, I know how things are built and constructed, and I know the process of how an interior design project needs to be run.  A lot these things I deal with on a daily basis, project management, drafting, programming.  Code names for flammability not as often i.e. NFPA 701. In case you are wondering that's a code dealing with the flammability of fabrics, specifically drapery. Yes I care about the fire rating of fabrics and I read about it when I select them but I don't conscientiously think about the NFPA 701.

The test is coming up at the end of this month and I've been revising like a fiend, taking practice tests and carrying flash cards to make sure I don't forget anything. It's been a throw back to college life and it's been strange.  I'll take 2 parts now in the fall and take a drafting practicum in the Spring. I wanted to be prepared but not overloaded. After all it's been a while since this girl's bubbled in a scantron test.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Birthday Fun in Detroit (Rock City) summer recap

This Summer was also a milestone, for my Grandpa, this year he turned 80 years old. My grandma hosted a huge party to celebrate. Family and Friends from all over came to party. It was great fun. Eric and I flew up on Friday and out late Sunday night so it was a whirlwind trip.

It was great to see all my extended family and introduce them to Eric. A few he had met at our wedding but most he had not.Some people I had not even seen since I was a little girl. Lucky for me I look just like my Mom so they knew who I was. It also helps that I am the only granddaughter my Grandpa has. It was a great trip and I am so happy that we got to celebrate the day with my grandpa.

Oh I forgot. I made the invitations, stamps and a really great book for my Grandpa with pictures I collected from family and friends on behalf of my parents. My brother also made a video with all the pictures. I think all the hard work making those things paid off because he was so amazed and shocked by it all.

We also had a TopGear moment. While in Detroit what car should one rent? Why a big American Muscle Car! So we rented a Red Ford Mustang. It was a fun.

This trip also marked the furthest North Eric has been in North America. We were also super nerds and took a breakfast trip over to Windsor, Canada to get our passport stamped. Yes I know they don't do it typically for Americans but we asked nicely and the obliged.

Running wins and a fail.

So I have taken up a healthier hobby. I have started running. Training with the Couch to 5k program. It's been a few months now and I can really see results. I can know run a mile in under 10 minutes. I have a lot of endurance. Not to mention I have lost over 10lbs. It feels so good to make a healthy change.  In that healthy line I have also registered for my first 5k! It's in October and runs through the major park here in Atlanta. I am so excited.
For Training as I've reached milestones I've bought myself better clothes, proper shoes and Eric bought me an amazing Garmin GPS watch that logs my miles and time. It has been really helpful in making me work harder. I also really wanted a neon colored shirt so I can be seen. (I was also jealous of the other brightly colored runners and wanted to fit in.)

In sad news though I haven't been able to run for a week! I went to go running on Sunday and in dodging a cab I sprained my ankle in an electrical manhole that was moved. I have it wrapped and hope to heal soon to get back out there.

Spain Recap Part 2

So to continue where I left off. Eric and I rented a Mini Cooper One. Which you can read about here.
Having a car was really a huge sense of freedom, and a bit daunting. Foreign country, signs in a language I can't read, but we did it. All with only a road map. (That I highlighted our route along the way. Like the nerd I am.)

We left Madrid, and headed to Toledo.  We had booked our hotel the night before. This is a very fly by the seat of our pants trip. We knew we wanted to over look the city.We got our wish. The view was stunning.  That picture was from our private balcony at our hotel.  Exploring Toledo was almost like being in a labyrinth. Once you are inside the medieval walls the narrow alleys and twisting hills make it easy to get lost. Luckily where every you looked it is beautiful. 
Toledo's jaw dropping cathedral. The inside (you can't take pictures) is unbelievable

 from wikipedia.

We were only in Toledo for a day and a half, but we made the most of the time we were there. I really loved the old city and was channeling my Grandpa with a midwestern phrase he used to say when I was a kid "Holy Toledo!" (used in a shocked/surprise fashion.) Most of Toledo deserved that. It was a picture postcard everywhere you looked. After an early morning visit to see El Greco's The Burial of Count Orgaz we headed down to Granada!


Other things to catch up on. We saw two amazing bands in my blog hiatus. Fitz and the Tantrums and Mumford & Sons.  We had already seen Mumford but it was amazing to see them again the energy they have when they perform and the emotion they give the music can make you cry during the show it hits you so hard.

We also saw Fitz and the Tantrums! They were UNBELIEVABLE. It was a small show and they rocked it out like they were filming for live tv. I have never danced and laughed so much at a show. I have been listening to their album almost daily on my runs. It's infectious. If they are coming near you. Go see them and buy tickets fast because they won't be available for long.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Super late wedding recap.

My good friend Rebecca also got married! It was such a beautiful wedding and it was amazing to see all the details she worked so hard on come through. I had been talking to her about her plans. Helped design her wedding invitations but seeing the finally results was astounding.

She and her husband had a beautiful tented wedding in April. The weather was perfect, the site that had a few months before been nothing had been transformed by her family and his into a stunning location. Everyone chipped in to make things. A trellis for her and him to get married under was made by her Dad with wood from her families home. The property they got married on and a bridge to cross a creek bed was made by his Dad. The amount of little detail touches and graceful southern charm really stole my heart. Everything about the wedding said just had my friend written all over it. It was gorgeous.

Me and the bride! I look a bit wonky but oh well.

Oh and other fun wedding news. Eric and I's wedding photographers were there. Shannon and Steve are amazing and it was so good to see them again.

Early Summer fun

May also was the start of some good things for me. Eric and I took Memorial Day weekend to go to Savannah. We had a great time. Neither one of us had been there for a significant amount of time. We stayed at the Westin and got to take a ferry across. Which was silly exciting to me. Walking around downtown exploring the beautiful old city was nice but it was even better when we rented a scooter. It felt like we were terrorizing the streets zipping along everywhere. I think that will be our new vacation plan. Rent a scooter wherever we travel.
Our happy feet kicking back in a hammock by the river at the hotel. It was so lovely.

I also took up a new hobby. I started running in May. I also registered for my first 5k! It's in October.

Designer Rock Star

May was a busy month for me at work. We were finishing a lot projects up. Starting new ones and getting ready for Modern Atlanta. This year we held one of the biggest events of the week here in our office. We asked Karim Rashid to come and speak.  Hundred's of people flocked in our doors to check out his designs we had on display and to hear him speak.  He was brilliant. It was my first time meeting someone who's designs I really admire. His talk was candid and left me reflecting the way technology and design impact our world.
One of my favorite things he said that has stuck with me was his reflections on people thinking that the past was so much better and how people were closer. His thoughts (not verbatim) were how closer technology has made us. I can pick up phone, email and skype to almost anywhere in the world. How easily we can contact people.

It was a great night and I even got a picture with him. The photo also had the other folks I work with so I cut them out so they aren't displayed on my random blog.

Qucik recap to apease my brain. Part 1

So Eric and I went on holiday to Spain. In short, we had a fantastic time. In the long,  we got to really explore the country. We both felt that Madrid was interesting but not the coolest Spanish city we have been too. We loved seeing some of the amazing works at the Prado and the Reina Sofia. Guernica, and Las Meninas took my breathe away. I am also a bigger fan of Goya. Though I don't think I'll hang any of his prints in my home anytime soon. Not very happy guy.
Guernica from Wikipedia

Las Menias from here

The Witches Sabbath by Goya from here

It was amazing to see works that I have studied so long in person. We took some day trips to Avila, and El Escorial. Learning along the way that 1. Train travel is awesome. 2. If you are going during Siesta things become very very quiet in small towns. 3. If you are going to a more mountainous area dress warmer. I about froze my tail off in Avila. 40 degree weather in a skirt and light jacket is coooold.
We also broadened our food love and tried anything and everything we had never seen before. It was great.
Next time I recap, we move southward to Toledo and Granada!

Sad Panda

So today I realized that I haven't blogged anything since March. If you look above... the date is the 15th of September.  I can't believe I've left it alone for so long. I was doing so good, but hey isn't that how life goes. (usually fad diets.)

Anyway I think I'll get back to it. It's a fun way to keep my life in order. For starters I'll back track and begin where I left off. My amazing road trip through Spain, along with some of the fun things I did this until now. Work wise finished up a nail salon, met Karim Rashid. If you don't know who he is I can guarantee he's influenced something you've seen, bought or used before. Some great concerts, lifestyle changes, (my first 5k!), cooking healthier, 2nd anniversary and other odds and ends along the way.

Oh and I also changed up my blog layout. It is still a work in progress but the old style from my wedding just had to go. It's been gasp 2 years!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Journal Keeping while on vacation

So the first time I traveled abroad I wanted to remember everything. So the geek that I am I bought a moleskin journal to write everything down in. So on this trip I decided to do it again. I'm also a crazy pack rat traveler and keep mementos of what we do. Ticket stubs, random interesting receipts. I scan it all and it goes in our blurb album when I make them.  Keeping a journal is also a handy place to keep flight information, hotel info and other important details that you need handy.
It is also fun to read a few years later and remember the little things that cracked us up or drove us crazy.

I think this trip I drove Eric crazy with a jingle I made up.
Sad hungry (American) humans that we are Eric dipped into a Mcdonald's for breakfast one morning and I saw on the menu a Chicken move-it. All I could think of is the cartoon Madagascar  and I like to move it move it. Which in my double espresso head became " I like the chicken move-it move-it" McDonalds if you are listening it could totally be an ad campaign for you. It got stuck in my head for days! These are the things I think of and journal. Traveling in a foreign country where you speak a handful of words can make you sink into a crazy sing-songy type of world. Ok maybe that's just me.

Either way it was good times.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Road trip!!!!

Eric and I just got back from our 2 week road trip through Spain. I am still reeling in the fact that we saw and did so much. It almost doesn't seem real. That Google map is a screen capture of the route that we drove. We began our journey in Madrid, went to Avila, El Elscorial, Toledo, Granada, Valencia, Barcelona and some tiny cities along the coast of France. We saw a ton.  We drove about 2,200 km, in a Mini Cooper One. (It was cute but it has nothing on my little red monster.)
I'm going to have a few postings about our trip so I will start with how we got around. The little Mini we got was a great size if not as speedy as mine. It also was better on gas.Which is great news when gas is 8 dollars a gallon. (YIKES!) Before we got the car we flew into Madrid and wandered around Madrid for a few days on foot and via taxi before we got our car.  The train system there is great so we used it to take our two day trips to Avila and El Escorial. I really liked riding in the trains. I wish the U.S had a better train system. It was so simple and easy.

Once we left Madrid we got the car. We set off to Toledo. It amazes me that they just will rent a car to you if you have a drivers license. We didn't know Spanish much less the road rules. Lucky we are quick learners and watched everyone else.  Another fact we learned is GPS are fine to have. I had read somewhere online that they were illegal. It isn't GPS systems it's radar. So Eric and I didn't have a navigation system besides an atlas Eric bought. I became the map reader/directions girl while Eric drove. It worked out perfectly. We really did need two people.

Once I edit my pictures a bit. I'll have more to share. :)

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Every year New Year's rolls by and I make a sort of half-hearted attempt at a resolution. This year I have done it again but on a smaller scale so that I can make it more of a life change then a few week resolution. I've kept up eating a bit healthier as well as working out. The month of January I created a habit. They say doing anything for 21 days creates a habit. It's true. So the 21 days has past and I still go almost daily. I have had trouble going lately with my upcoming trip. I also have a calendar that I've placed on my fridge where I can place an X for the days I go. It's silly but it makes me happy to mark it off a bench mark of sorts. 

One of my favorite things that has happened out of this is walking. Every weekend and a few times a week instead of going to the gym Eric and I walk. We usually come up with a destination, a restaurant, store or something to explore and we set off. Our walks usually take us a couple of miles. Last nights was about 4 our longest about 10. I realize I look forward to these walks more than any other part of my day. It's time for Eric and I to talk about our day, to explore and see new things about the city we live in and try new edible awesomeness this city has to offer.  It is also nice knowing that I'm still working on being healthy and sticking with my plan as well as creating a better bond with Eric.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

So creative.

While in design school I was fortunate to meet and befriend some of the most creative people. Quite a few who I still talk to on a regular basis. Being stuck in a room drafting for days has a way of bringing people together. Almost everyone there was not only gifted in design but also in creative endeavors, jewelry, painting, photography, sewing. This brings me to my friend Jen. She is extraordinary skilled and talented and she now has an Etsy shop. In this her shop I had been coveting this amazing little clutch. I fell in love with it's adorableness.
Not to mention that the inside is teal. I love colored linings. Alas, I wanted it but never bought it for myself. One of those I want it maybe someday someone will get it for me. While what do you know. My other amazingly creative friend Rebecca (also a design school alum) got it for me as a thank you. Oh how I love it. In fact I plotted my wardrobe to the symphony to go around it. So check out her shop if you get a chance. It's full of elegant items. 

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

I know, it's a mush hallmarky holiday, but I still like it. Maybe it's also because I'm an absolute sucker for chocolate. I've loved those little hearts full of candy since I was a toddler and told my Mom that my Dad was going to get me one. He did, a bright yellow box. I am sure it was just as fantastic as my little brain made it out to be since I still remember it so fondly.  This Valentine's day falls on a Monday so it's kind of a strange holiday. So this year I decided to give Eric his Valentine's day gift early. I bought him a flight lesson. (Thank you Groupon.) He is really excited about it. I know he will love it. He's been talking about flying since we first got together.  This is our 7th Valentine's Day. 

Being that today is Valentine's day and 7 years ago we celbrated our first we sort of got to recreate our first Valentine's day. Eric for our first Valentine's Day took me to the Symphony Orchestra. It was my very first time going and it was wonderful. Through a little bit of luck, Eric's boss had tickets last Friday and couldn't go, we got to go again. It was fun to this time walk there and reminesce about our first show. Then enjoy the great evening with fantastic seats. Third row, Beatles Paul McCartney tribute everything about it was great.  
I'm not sure what Eric is up to for Valentine's day. He said it's going to happen while we are on vacation. Which is in 4 days! So I'm curious and excited to see what he's thought up. He's always brilliant at things like this.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Wham Bam.. thank you (in Spain)

In just a few short days I am going to be getting ready to get on a plan. Eric and I are off for 15 days in Spain. It's an adventure that I am so excited to take. We've got a car rented and our first hotel booked, from there we are free to go and do as we please and spend time where ever we see fit. It's going to be amazing. We've added Granada to our journey, who knows where else we will end up. The count down has started.
In the meantime work has been slammed. Hence the Wham Bam. I've got a ton to accomplish to make sure that my drafting part is done for quite a few jobs we have going. It has meant some brain slug evenings but that's ok. I know at the end of this rush is a glass of sangria and some jamon.

That's one of the kitchens (in Denmark) that I'm working on the construction documents for. So luck is needed that I finish everything I need to so I can relax on vacation.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


I usually live in Sunny, sometimes cold Atlanta. Where it rarely snows, and the snow rarely lasts more than a day. Not this time. It has snowed a solid 4" Its been crazy. The stores are emptied of all their bread,eggs and milk along with every type of meat and veg.(I'm not sure why Southern folks think those 'staples' will be the best food choices.) Anyway Sunday night is when it started to snow. Eric and I decided to go explore. The first picture is a shot of my street. It looked so pretty snow covered.

Next we headed over to our neighborhood pub to warm up with a beer on their patio. They have a great fire pit. I made an impromptu fridge for my beer :)

and some graffiti on one of the tables that hadn't been hit with the snow as much.  We then kept meandering through the neighborhood laughing and skidding with all the other Atlantans that came out to play.
I  had to make a snow angel on the cleanest and prettiest area of snow.

Silly me I got soaked making it and we still had more walking to do. It was worth it though. I haven't seen this much snow in years. Finally after walking around for a long time we made it home. It seemed like whatever direction we headed the wind changed direction and snow was in our faces. It was a lot of fun to be in such a frozen world. Back in side though with our dripping coats and snow covered hats I took one last shot out of my window and then curled up on the couch. It was the end to a perfect weekend.

weekend fun

This past weekend was quite possibly one of the best ever. Friday night Eric decided to cook something we've been wanting to try for ages. Beef Wellington. We've been watching a lot of Gordan Ramsay shows. I love The F word. and we've been wanting to try cooking some of the things he makes and this seemed to be something he makes often. So Eric gave it a shot. He did a fantastic job. It was delicious.

I'm not sure if Eric will make it again I think I'm going to give my hand roasting a duck next. :)

Saturday was one of those great days that I will always remember. Eric, his brother and I set off early Saturday morning for Vogel State park. His brother and I having just got new cars wanted to test them out on curvy mountain roads. I'll add some a picture of our cars later I only have one image that I took from the top of the mountain once we got there. We left Atlanta and it was cold 41 degrees but by the time we got to Vogel and up the moutain there was snow and ice and we were below freezing. We took it easy and made it home safe.  Driving on roads like that made me love the show Top Gear more it was exhilarating. The best part was Eric's brother, Matt's idea to have walkie-talkies so we could communicate up in the mountains. BEST IDEA EVER.

We did stop at the outlets on our way home  though where I found 3 amazing BCBG dresses all for under 150 dollars. Amazing sale plus a clearance item. Woot Woot. Saturday was brilliant and I can't wait for Spring time to drive back up the mountain with the top down on my Mini.

Sunday was lazy and we were expecting snow later that day. Eric and I walked around the city, tried a new french restaurant for brunch and found new paths to get to places. We ended up lazying it up at home until the snow started to fall. Snowmageddon is next!

Monday, January 3, 2011

New Year, New thoughts,

This post started because  I was cleaning up my blog list. Things I never read. Things I had no idea were there. It really showed how much my life has changed in a year and a half and more. How far and different my life is. It's funny how something so small as my blog can be a time capsule for a long ago life. I started this blog when I was planning my wedding. It's merged to be just a rambling blog of my thoughts and mini and major milestones in my life. I need to blog more.  It's interesting to see where and how my life is changing. It is a virtual diary of my happenings of things coming and going from my life. It's kinda cool.

2010 saw a lot of changes for Eric and I. It was our first solid year being married. Starting with last New Years Eve and that was quite possibly the worst. We had just been robbed and we were very miserable, we didn't like where we were living and were biding our time to move. This new years saw us in a completely different state. It was one of the best New Years I've had in a long time. We went out with some good friends as well My Brother-in-law and his Girlfriend.  We brought in the New Year at our favorite pub. It was a great way to send off the year surrounded by good people in our fantastic new city.

Hopefully 2011 will keep on being great.