Monday, June 14, 2010

Power Purchasing

The Power Purchase is just as powerful as it's name might suggest. An arduous activity, this is no experience for amateurs---consider yourself warned, casual shopper. What might a Power Purchase (yes, this term requires capitalization always) entail?
1. Saving: any purchase that requires careful financial planning immediately lends itself to this definition.
2. Price: whether your Power Purchase falls under category #1 or is purely spontaneous, any high-priced item (this being a completely relative term) qualifies.
3. Research: product research is often critical when shopping at this level. If you find yourself studying, odds are you're investing in a P.P. Perhaps not the most effective acronym...
4. Endurance: You're contemplating a purchase that is going to be somewhat long-term. This product better last.
5. Excitement, anxiety, guilt, gratitude....Power Purchasing can be quite emotionally exerting.

And while I enjoy shopping as much as the next female, I typically suck at this game. I tried on three different occasions this fall to purchase a television. Still don't own one. I wanted the Waring Pro Belgian Waffle Maker on a level that rivals the Christmas Story. I even saved for it. And the only reason I now own one is because a friend decided it would make a nice birthday gift. Now, it's not always the case that I don't follow through with the Power Purchase, but I have learned that I frequently need a support team to do so. My current laptop required a friend/counselor to help me balance my pros/cons list, but I am typing on it. Ultimately, however, there's a commitment factor in a Power Purchase that I find slightly petrifying. What if it malfunctions? What if I invest only to find I've put my time and money into an inferior product? What if I don't love it enough to name it?!? And do I really need it? And frequently, rather than deal with all the assessed risks, I abandon my conquest and go to Target where I buy a $6 v-neck t-shirt.

Feel free to analyze my commitment issues at another time, however, because this weekend I was a Power Purchasing guru! Granted, portions of this weekend were paid for by sources other than my bank account, but they were commitments for me nonetheless. All meet at least one of the standard Power Purchase requirements:

Jillian Michaels: Yoga Meltown AND 30-day Shred. This yoga video changed my life---for at least 2 days anyway. SORE!
Rodney Yee's AM/PM Yoga: I've been wanting this ever since I started using my roommate Jess' in Michigan. Partially for the calming influence, but mostly for sentimental reasons. No explanation at this time.
Le Petit Prince: French makes me happy. So does the savings account I have designated for my trip to France...details forthcoming.
Garmin 255WT GPS: I have found myself frustrated on the side of the road one to many times in Virginia. No more! (This purchase took a solid 20 minutes on the phone with my mother while in Best Buy. Support teams in Power Purchasing = CRUCIAL!)
Rosetta Stone, Russian Levels 1-3: I've been studying the language for about a year and a half now and love it. Maintaining study during the summer months is not easy, but it's absolutely necessary because of my final Power Purchase.
A plane ticket to...

MOSCOW!!! Language study, operatic experience and lovely November temperatures await on my month-long work expedition!

Needless to say, even Target's $6 t's will be put on hold for the time being. Hopefully my Power Purchasing emotional high will last until they get a new color in.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Top 25

Nothing screams "Happy Birthday" like a picture of my 17-year old shirtless brother. At least that's what he thought. Nothing, that is, except for the fabulous pin he sent me in a leopard-print card. If only he'd sent me something leopard print to wear with it...

Yes, I am another year sexier, as the button would suggest. Not that I needed a button for anyone to realize that Dylan...
In addition, I am also:

This one's courtesy of my sister Lindsey. Since she started working for USPS (thankfully not the hateful UPS) she's become a packaging goddess, and my birthday package was no exception---even if they were out of 6's. I have to say that I'm quite looking forward to 25 plus 1. How could I not be, given my even sexier status??? 25 was good to me though, and given my love for lists (thank you Lindsey for another notebook!) here's a "Top 25". I haven't decided if there will actually be 25 or if it will just be highlights of top experiences during year 25...the beauty of spontaneity and the flexibility of an asterisk!

*San Francisco: an amazing city and an equally amazing summer!
*Dean. I have always looked up to my little sister, but I'll never forget the overwhelming pride and love I felt the day Karlie became a mom. I have a profound respect for the calling of motherhood and I can't think of anyone more worthy of such a divine title.
*MOM and the girl's visit San Fran. I lived in 3 different cities during year 25, and it means a lot to share them with the people I love. And as it turns out, the 5 women who played mom throughout my life are fun girlfriends too!
*No more braces! Ever. Seriously.
*Buffalo Wild Wings and college football season. It might be rough at the moment, but I love being a Michigan fan and it made for some fun times this past fall.
*Catherine. I could easily think of a top 25 list for the roommate and sister who came into my life this year. Sparkle Burger, yoga, pedicures, and all the drama two girls can create!
*Waffle maker. I wanted a deluxe Belgian waffle maker for most of the time I was 25. And I got it as an early 26th birthday present. It's everything I dreamed and more.
*NYC audition trip
*3 dates that would have to make the top 10 list. Or at least top 20...
*Thanksgiving turkey cartilage. This was the hardest I laughed ALL year!!!
*Modern Family night
*Stasney ranch. Best beef of my life. No joke.
*Beaver's brunch: Bacon omelette biscuit!!!
*Christmas Eve with my family could be a highlight of every year I live. This one with my family, culminating in a sister sandwich sleepover, was no exception.
*Lindsey's wedding. SISTER!!! She was breathtakingly beautiful, as she always has been, but seeing her come out of the temple was a moment I'll truly cherish.
*Golf...or the driving range anyway.
*Daddy's special phone call
*New Year's Eve with one of my best friends during one of 25's roughest patches. I love my peeps!
*HGO Studio life. Not sure that I've processed my first season quite yet, but I've grown more professionally this year than I believed was possible. It scares me to think how little I knew when I started my job. And how much I still have to learn before getting a real one...
*Road trip
*Maddox! Sometimes it breaks my heart to be away from family, especially when it means I don't get to meet new nephew #2 until he's 6 months old. But some things are worth the wait and I'm lucky enough to have a little sister who's helping brainwash him into loving his favorite aunt...right Dani??? Yet another sister I couldn't be more proud of.
*Queen of Spades opening weekend was definitely a highlight of 25. 6 family members visited Houston, witnessed my HGO mainstage debut, ate and played the time away! Bowling, the driving range, the alligator park, elevator ride, water wall, Barnaby's, opening night arm candy...if I were ranking this list, this weekend would be at number 1.
*Grandpa Rhodes
*Beach trips and possibly the most ridiculous surfing injury ever!

I think I made it to somewhere around 25, and I could keep going but this is getting obnoxiously long. AND, this much blogging is already cutting into way too much 26 time. But..

*Here's a final asterisk of gratitude for the people in my life who make every day and year meaningful. Brainstorming through the past year brings to mind countless phone conversations, messages, emails, and relationships that mean the world to me. Bits of my life and love are scattered across the country with all the people who've contributed to the 25 years that have shaped me into who I am. So...I blame all of you for making me another year sexier!!! Eat your heart out...

Don't worry, I already did.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Memorial Day Moving

Memorial Day weekend started out here...

But a Friday jaunt across Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and finally Georgia, led to an evening in Atlanta. Not to miss out on Atlanta's finest, we made sure to stop at The Varsity---as recommended by Diners, Drive-ins and Dives. The friendly southern greeting of "What'll ya have?" (actually uttered in quite an annoyed, aggressive manner) combined with the deliciously greasy fare made for quite the wrap up to a day of road-tripping.

Another day of driving through the Carolinas and Virginia and we made it to here:

Well...not actually to the monument, but to it's home city anyway.

Why??? This summer's adventures will be brought to you courtesy of Wolf Trap Opera, located in Vienna, Va.

It's a beautiful area and a wonderful company so it shouldn't be too shabby of a summer!

Sunday was a monument and museum marathon. We made stops at the Air and Space, American History, and Holocaust museum, along with checking out the White House and all the major monuments along the Mall.

As a special Memorial Day weekend treat, we were able to witness the Rolling Thunder motorcycle parade through DC, a group honoring veterans and drawing special attention to POW-MIA issues (just learned this on their website). Despite this happening agenda, we still managed a side-trip to the waterfront to visit the fish market and enjoy some fresh seafood. That had been deep fried. It was almost like I was back in Texas...

Monday was my first day at "The Trap" but it was a light enough schedule that we still had time to make it to the Arlington National Cemetery. I have to say, despite the traffic and the wait to get in, this was an amazing Memorial Day experience. Volunteers place a small flag in front of every headstone in honor of our veterans, and it was a truly awesome sight.

And that's a weekend! 4 days, 9 states, the fantastic little joys of road tripping, the even greater joy upon arriving at the destination and completing said road trip, and some serious sight-seeing on what must be one of Washington DC's busiest weekends! Nothing like a slow, relaxing start to summer, right??? :)

Photographs (excepting the Wolf Trap pics) brought to you by:

Tim: photographer and road-tripping friend extraordinaire!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...