Monday, August 12, 2013


2013...C and I are referring to this as the "year of running". Remember those goals I was tossing around? Well, it turns out that running a full marathon with my cousins made the list this year. Chicago Marathon, October 13th, we'll be there. In preparation for this event, we ran two half marathons in the first half of the year and have spent the last 8-10 weeks sloshing our way through the marathon training program. This week will be the longest run we've ever done...15 miles. Of course, that will be trumped by next week's 16 mile run, so it's all relative at this point.

As always, work is crazy. C is traveling for business off and on; nothing like the months he spent in Dallas, thankfully. I'm preparing for a work trip over to Copenhagen in a few weeks. This will be the first of 3 or 4 trips total over the next 4 months. And of course, we're both working hard on various other projects at work.

Spending hours per week running and a few days a month traveling for work? Why not get a dog? Yes, it's true, the G-family is in the market for a dog. But we don't have time for a dog? But Mel, you don't even like animals? As it turns out, C loves dogs, and I love my husband, so here we are. I keep sensing a replay of Marley and Me, of which the only thing keeping me moving forward in this whole thing is that at the end of the day, no matter how terrible Marley was, they still loved her. Apparently dogs are joyous. That remains to be seen. I'm praying for a low/no-shedding, low-energy, chill dog that comes housebroken and doesn't bark. Which one is that?

So that's our 2013 so far. We have a few more months before our marathon, which hits just before my work projects will really pick up steam and then we'll be sliding into the holidays. I have no idea where 2013 went, but it started off like no other year for us and has continued down that path. I'll try to write more, because really, I do like to write. But please don't give up on me if it's 2014 before you see me again. It's a real possibility at this point.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

One More Week...

...says the guy who told me two more weeks three weeks ago.

Sometimes I'm not the world's best wife:

  1. I have never cleaned our bathroom-it's C's job and I would rather wait an extra week or two to make him do it than me just do it myself. 
  2. I fail at domesticity, like last week when I completely burnt a whole pot of rice.
  3. I'm "forcing" C to give up chocolate for Lent because I'm giving up chocolate for Lent. This means he's sitting here eating marshmallow puff straight from the container for dessert. Life's tough.
But when it comes to checking C in for Southwest flights, I excel. I take this job seriously. I set alarms so I don't forget. I get spots like A22. 

With any luck, this will be the last week C spends in Dallas. I'll have my running partner back soon. I'll have my bathroom cleaner back. I'll have my sous-chef back. It's an exciting time around here!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013


C and I came home from India four weeks ago. I know it's taken awhile to get this post going, and I really have no excuse as to why. Honestly, C still lives in Dallas 4 days a week so my weeknights are pretty tame. At this point my excuse is just laziness. It's many hours of watching Dawson's Creek on Netflix instead of blogging. It's the hours I spent reading Breaking Dawn so I can officially rid myself of the Twilight saga. It's pinterest. Enough said.

During my freshman year of college, I made a list of places I wanted to visit in my lifetime. Shortly after that, I spent a semester studying abroad in Germany and had the opportunity to cross a lot of places off my list. Over the past few years, I've been able to cross off a few more through work and personal travel. However, the list has grown as C and I toss around our own travel ideas and goals. India has been on my list since day one, but I honestly never thought I would have the opportunity to go. We were so blessed to be presented with an opportunity this summer when our friends informed us they would be moving there for a work assignment. They were only staying for six months which left us limited dates to schedule it and a short planning time. However, after sleeping on it that night, C and I decided we would never have a chance like this again. We were going to India.

India was an experience different from any others I've had. There were some major cultural hurdles that we had to overcome to really enjoy our time in India. These started at the airport in Chicago. We quickly became frustrated over the lack of organization, lines, and general respect for others as we waited to get our tickets for the flight. At that moment, we knew we had to let go of all we are used to and just go with the flow if we were going to enjoy ourselves at all.

We were blessed to have our good friends there to greet us as we landed in Bangalore. They spent the next 5 or 6 days with us in Bangalore and Goa. Having them there for advice and general knowledge about getting around was a HUGE help. We were heading to Delhi on our own for the last four days and were a bit nervous, but thanks to them, Delhi was a breeze!

Our trip was short considering all we were trying to fit in, but we were definitely ready to get home by the end. We spent about a day and a half in Bangalore, which was a nice transition. Our friends have a driver so we were able to see Lal Bhag and the Bangalore Palace, have Mendhi done (after an hour or so of searching for a place) as well as eat some good food and catch up on some of our missed sleep.

From Bangalore we hopped a plane to Goa, a coastal beach area. We spent about four days in Goa, including New Years Eve and New Years Day. Our mornings were usually spent doing some sight seeing and then the afternoons were spent at the beach. One of my favorite things of the whole trip was the Spice Farm tour we went on while in Goa. Indian's believe heavily in the healing power of spices. We learned that pretty much any spice can cure anything if you eat it or rub it on your skin (in a downward direction-away from the heart) twice a day for 3 months. Truth.

From Goa we flew to Delhi (via a confusing stopover/hopover in Mumbai) and spent the next four days visiting Delhi and Agra. We arrived in Delhi late in the night and got up bright and early the next morning to meet our driver for our trip to the Taj Mahal. A coworker of mine helped book a driver for us to go there and back in the same day. It made for a long day, but we were glad we did it this way instead of spending the night in Agra. The Taj was as impressive to see as it looks in pictures. Our driver picked up a "tour guide" on the side of the road as we entered Agra (a sight that was a bit scary to us at first, but again, our mantra of "just go with it" kicked in). The tour guide was really nice and super informative, even if he was trying to screw me out of money and take me to stores/restaurants that paid him commission. He took a lot of pictures for us which meant C and I actually came home with a few pictures of both of us together!

We spent three days sight seeing in Delhi after the Agra trip. We probably could have fit it into two days, or tried to see more stuff, but it was nice not to feel rushed or have to get up too early. This was supposed to be a vacation after all....

Overall we really enjoyed ourselves. We had a lot of great food, and some OK food, but really nothing bad. We never got sick or had any issues with the food or water. We didn't ever really feel unsafe or insecure about our surroundings (okay, maybe for a few minutes in Old Delhi--it was kind of sketch.). We even rode a few rickshaws and lived to tell about it! While we don't have plans to go back anytime soon, or ever probably, we were glad we went and enjoyed all that we experienced.

Check out the pictures below of our trip. I tried to post one picture of each highlight or major site we saw during the trip.

Getting Mendhi in Bangalore

C at the Spice Farm tour in Goa

Dona Paula in Goa

C and I ringing in New Years on US Time (it was 11:30 a.m. already in Goa-oh, and 95 degrees!)

Taj Mahal-Agra

Lotus Temple-Delhi

Qutub Minar-Delhi

Dilli Haat-Delhi

Jama Masjid-Delhi

Red Fort-Delhi

Humayun's Tomb-Delhi

India Gate-Delhi

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Another New Year

If I made new years resolutions, I probably would have failed at them already. It's January 23rd and I've already eaten too many sweets, skipped a few workouts, and neglected the stack of dishes in my kitchen because I despise unloading the dishwasher.  But let's focus on the good. The healthy food choices I did make. The workouts I did follow through with. The fact that my dining room floor finally got mopped after being on my to-do list for two months. These are the things victories are made of. 

I'm still sorting through my goals for the year, personally, professionally, and financially. Mostly at this point I'm just trying to make sure all my bills are paid on time, because life's routine is just off right now. And since C is still in Dallas every week, I work through these things while watching Dawson's Creek on Netflix. It seems like the grown up thing to do. 

C and I got back from India just over two weeks ago but I feel like know we're still playing catch up. Preparing for the holidays and our trip left little time for much else. In all, our holiday season was really good. We got to spend some time with both families over the Christmas weekend and then rang in the New Year in India with some good friends. Now I'm just feeling pressure to get things organized for the coming year. 

I'm happy to report that the few goals I set for myself last year were mostly met. I read 15 books, ran my second half marathon, and we found a church that we like. We still haven't started attending on a regular basis, but we found a place that we are both happy with for now at least. My last goal was to register for the CPA exam. I failed. Or I changed my mind. I'm not really sure which. This still weighs heavily on me, but so do other professional development possibilities. My job changed a lot last year and it has me thinking through what my best options are for continued development. So I put a hold on the CPA thing until I make a decision. 

So here are the things fighting in my brain to make the 2013 goals list:
1. Read 20 books (This makes me nervous, but I think I can do it. My friend R reads 50 books a year!)
2. Figure out a career development plan
3. Keep Traveling! (Austin, Vegas, Mexico, NYC, SF/Napa Valley, Canada..the list goes on)
4. Update my wardrobe (I know this sounds crazy, but I mean this in the sense that I make smart choices about what I buy and buying quality rather than crap)
5. Save money (this conflicts with #3 and #4, but C and I have some savings goals we're working towards)
6. Run a half marathon with my cousins
7. Run a full marathon with my cousins? (This is really C's idea)
8. Do a mud/obstacle run (Warrior Dash, Mud Run, etc.)
9. Send more birthday cards
10. Blog more
11. Do random acts of kindness for C more
12. Get organized! (read as: Clean out the office)
13. Learn to sew and actually do it!
14. Get more involved in Kansas City groups and issues
15. Make our wedding album (this one should really make the final list. It's been over two years since our wedding.)

So that's the list. Maybe I can do all the things, but I think I should really narrow it down to about 5 items to focus on. As my uncle reminded me last night, if you set the expectation low, you can only please people when you exceed it! These are words to live by.