Monday, June 20, 2011

The Next Chapter

I haven't posted in awhile because 1) I tend to procrastinate and 2) I've been moving from Indianapolis back home to Grand Rapids, Mich. There has been so much to do in the past few weeks that I've barely had a minute to breathe, but I'm finally starting to settle in after my first official week living in G.R. after 7 years. Weird.

Moving back home at 25 wasn't really what I had planned, but I've learned a lot in the past few  years that sometimes it's best not to make plans -- you have no idea where you're going to end up anyways!

So for now, I'm excited to spend more time with my family, my friends from home, trying new things (like hot yoga!) and enjoying each day.

Now, just for fun, here are a few tracks I've been listening to lately. Set your speakers to STUNNED.

Chromeo -- Bonafied Lovin'
Ignore the creepy video; I really like this song. I like the "Riot in Belgium Remix" the best but can't find it on YouTube.

Anya Marina -- Satellite Heart
Okay, I give everyone permission to make fun of me after this video. Not only do I have a creepy 1995 version of SIMS above, but this one is part of the New Mood soundtrack. I fully understand how lame I am. And I'm okay with it.

Cults -- You Know What I Mean
Hopefully this song will let me end this post on a high note.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Las Vegas: Work Hard, Play Hard

Last week about 15 co-workers and I arrived in Las Vegas for an annual show and convention. Even though some people might not understand it, this is not a trip we look forward to. It takes more than six months of prep work and you're usually working for 12+ hours a day when you're there.

Even though it's a lot of hard work, spending way too much time with co-workers, eating from a food court or subsisting on cheese-its all day, I think it's important to go explore a city when you have the opportunity to do so. Life is short and I want to see as much of the world as I possibly can.

Monday night Jaime and I went on a dinner date before the madness of the show began. We headed to The Venetian and grabbed a great dinner of cheese appetizers, crab cakes, salad, soup and of course vino at Aquaknox. It was so delicious and the atmosphere was awesome.

The last night in Vegas the girls headed to Pure night club in Caesar's Palace, pretty much on a whim. We hung out on the rooftop patio, ending up meeting some other people in town for convention and were treated to bottle service! Sometimes you never know what can happen when you are just open and up for anything. This was definitely a very memorable night.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Ode to Yesterdog

A couple weekends ago I met my boyfriend and his friend at my parent's house in Grand Rapids, Mich. After a few hours of doing what the boys love to do -- shopping with a strong Canadian dollar -- I forced them to drive me to my favorite food joint in GR -- Yesterdog.

I try to make it here every time I get home, usually with my best friend Kelsey. They have the most delicious chili dogs I have ever tasted -- I seriously have yet to find anything that even remotely compares. I've attempted to find a good hot dog joint in Indy, but have only failed so far. Because I forgot my camera that weekend, I found a great site that has a few wonderful pictures of my beloved Yesterdog.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Half-Priced Books

Tonight I spent about an hour perusing the aisles at Half-Priced Books. If you've never been to a Half-Priced Books store, you do not know what you're missing! I could seriously spend an entire day in this store. They have books on everything you can imagine and -- surprise, surprise -- they are incredibly cheap.

I found two C.S. Lewis books I have been wanting: "Mere Christianity" and "The Screwtape Letters." Many friends have recommended both and since one of my goals this year is to read more, I picked up both for under $10. I also found two workout DVDs for about half the price they were at Target. Score.

And just to make sure I don't get too dedicated to working out and eating healthy, I also bought a book titled "Mmmm ... Baking" filled with hundreds of recipes for cookies, breads, brownies, cakes and desserts. Semi-fail on my part but I'm excited to try out the new recipes. I will be sure to post my baking attempts here. I think the first recipe I'll try is for Jelly Donut Muffins. Mmmm ... donuts.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Detroit and Novi

Last weekend I drove to Novi, Mich., to meet Brett for a long weekend. It was great to see him after 10 weeks apart!

We stayed at the Baronette Hotel -- a boutique hotel right next to Novi's shopping mecca, the Twelve Oaks Mall. The hotel is very elegant and modern; I loved staying there and can't wait to go back.

It even has a wine/bread/cheese market in the restaurant, which was perfect since we got snowed in on Sunday night. We just grabbed a bottle of malbec and headed back to our room to watch movies while the crazy Michigan weather piled about seven inches of snow on our cars.

Saturday was a great day to be outside though. We had bright blue skies and while it was still cold, it was just warm enough to go to the Detroit Zoo. Here are some photos of our visit.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Friends, Sushi and Banana Nut Muffins

So the past few weeks I haven't been doing much after work. My evening is usually working out and watching some Teen Mom 2 (PS I know you're totes jealous of my life. PPS Why is Chelsea so dumb?! I mean really!). I'm just so tired from work that I haven't felt like doing anything. Add to that the icy/nasty weather and I really don't want to do anything. Sound like a Debbie Downer? Well I probably am, but living in the dreary Midwest all winter long is almost painful. I don't care who you are, you know it's awful.

Anyways, I'm dropping the pity party. Last week I got to spend some time with good friends and that's a great way to break up a bleak winter.

I went to Sushi On the Rocks with my lovely Kappa sister, Victoria. I had never been there before and it was awesome -- plus on weekdays during happy hour they have a few half-off rolls! Can't go wrong with that. If you go, try the Playboy roll, they light it on fire so it has to be good right? It was so great catching up with her; we hadn't gotten together in forever and a life-catch up was very much needed.

On Thursday it was co-friend Jaime's 25th birthday. The other co-friends and I took her to a hibachi restaurant on the northside and then went rock climbing. I think we should have waited to eat five pounds of Japanese food before strapping on harnesses but lesson learned. I don't think I have laughed so hard as I did that night. Love these girls.

Also sometime during last week I made these muffins. They turned out pretty good and are fairly healthy -- I used flaxseed instead of eggs and used whole wheat flour. I found the recipe here.

Hope everyone is having a great week!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Journalism is Evolving

This January my friend and co-worker (I like the term co-friend) Jaime and I were interviewed by Butler University for its journalism website. Earlier we had met with the head of the journalism department to discuss changes in the school's curriculum, and to say I'm jealous of the j-school kids who get to study in the new communications department is an understatement.

When we were at Butler the electronic, media arts and print journalism courses were completely separated. Now that we're on the grind at the publishing company, we pretty much do all three -- print and online writing, social media marketing, shooting and editing video, taking photographs, copy editing -- and although we learned a lot at Butler, many of the skills I have learned since graduating have been learned through experience and adapting my journalistic skills as necessary.

While adapting your skills is something that will happen to every graduate at their first job, and correspondingly at every new job thereafter, the fact that the new communications department at Butler is combining all three departments (electronic, media arts and print) will only make students more prepared.

Anyways, long story short, here's the story featuring me and Jaime. And here's a great article about entrepreneurial media in my home state of Michigan and how media as a whole is evolving. Tip for younger journalists -- learn every medium, because when you get hired, you'll have to know and do it all.