Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Does everything happen for a reason?

Do you believe in signs or fate? Three things have happened to me in the last 3 days that have been very ironic and have me feeling very thankful. I don't know how or why, but it makes me wonder if things really do happen for a reason.

It's been kind of a scary week so far. First off, someone broke into our apartment building on Monday morning after most everyone was at work. He posed as a maintenance man and the only thing we can think of is that he told someone he was cleaning crew and they let him in. Otherwise, there's no way for anyone to get in here since the doors are pretty secured. He was sweeping the hallway while paying attention to which apartments were quiet and who was leaving for work. I'm still on the job hunt however, my recruiter set me up with a 2 day job to assist with on Monday and Tuesday, so I was not home (normally, I would have been). When I got home around 5:00, I found my neighbors standing in the hallway and the girl next door was getting a new door put on. Apparently, this idiot tried to take the peepholes off the doors to see inside the apartments. Her apartment and one other had been pried open with a crowbar, and some others had a little wear by the door handles, as if a break-in had been attempted. On our floor, there are 2 apartments with dogs - ours and the one across the hall. Since we've moved here, Penny has decided that it's necessary to bark at all the noises she hears in the hallway or at the door. It's annoying and we've gotten to the point of keeping a spray bottle with water nearby to spray her and stop her from barking. Doesn't work. Anyway...before I went inside my place, my other neighbor with dogs said that it looked like our apartments were 2 of the only ones not to be messed with (aside from having our peepholes loosened) since he probably went to our doors, heard the dogs bark, and moved on. I'd always heard that intruders are more scared of dogs than alarms, for the fear of being attacked. I opened my front door and there was Penny, standing there happy to see me with her tongue hanging out and tail wagging. I gave her the BIGGEST hug and kiss, changed out of my work clothes, and took her right to the park to play. Suddenly, I was happy that she decided to bark at noises in the hallway and I now see it as her way of protecting us. She might be no more than 20 pounds, but she's the best little guard dog we could ask for.

Now, the ironic part is that I had not planned on Penny being home that day. Since I've been home most days and had this temp job coming up, I had thought about taking her to doggie daycare since I didn't know what time I'd be home and since Mike was working as well. Both our work places were too far from home to come take her out during lunch, and since we had friends in town over the weekend and didn't get to spend much time with her, I thought it would be fun for her to get out and play and was all set to drop her off at 7:30 on Monday morning. However, the weather here has been so gorgeous, that I decided to forego daycare and decided that I would take her to the park after I got home from work. Had I decided to take her in, chances are, our apartment would have been broken into since Penny would not have been there to bark and growl at the door noises. All I could think about was coming home to a busted door, and stolen laptop and jewelry like my poor neighbors.

Yesterday, I did treat Penny to a day of play at doggie daycare. Our apartment was not broken into however, my car was hit. I was on my way into my temp job, sitting at a light, when the guy behind me wasn't paying attention to the red light and hit me pretty hard from behind. I was so shocked, I literally let out a scream. My car was hit was some pretty good force, that the stuff in my console and the coins in my change holder all fell right out when my car moved back. I was totally expecting a major dent in the back of my car (though I was relieved, knowing I wasn't at fault), and there were only just a few minor scratches on both cars. The man who hit me was very nice and very apologetic and even he was shocked that there was no bad damage since he admitted to not paying attention and slamming into me. Even though he would have been at fault, it's never fun to deal with a damaged car. I am feeling the effects of whiplash today, but he has offered to pay for chiropractic treatment that I will most likely take him up on.

Now here's a weird twist...the night before, I had a very vivid dream about a song. Lately, I have been having very vivid dreams and I think it's because I have a lot on my mind. I've been getting discouraged about a few things and not to happy about the way some things have been going however, I've been trying hard to restore my faith (that I will admit, I lost a bit of in the last year). I say a prayer before bed every night and even downloaded a devotional app that automatically posts a verse or saying every morning and night. On Monday night, I remember that the song "Jesus Take the Wheel" by Carrie Underwood (who is one of my faves) was playing in my dream. I don't remember how or why, but when I woke up Tuesday morning, I remember that song in my dream very, very clearly. When I got in the car on Tuesday morning, I decided to play the song since I had not heard it in awhile. I played it once, then played it a second time...and then I got hit. I didn't really think of all this until today, but it's so ironic how this accident, which felt like it should have been MUCH worse than it actually was, was OK. Almost as if some higher being was watching out for me, knowing that I have been dealing with stress lately.

Finally, the third incident has to do with a show I watched today. Lately, a lot of my stresses have been job related. Finding a good job in today's economy is tough, and I know there are people out there who have been looking longer than I have. When we moved to Atlanta, I was in debate about what to do job-wise. I was (and still am) having the "what do I want to be when I grow up" syndrome. The last several years, I've been working in marketing and I've been lucky enough to work with some really good companies. I wouldn't mind staying in marketing however, I really want to work for a company that I'm passionate about (such as arts, entertainment, media) and I really want to start stepping over and doing something more creative. I would also love to start a side business doing something creative, that maybe I can eventually down the road, make full-time. I'm most happy when I'm doing something creative and doing something I love. I love my photography, I love to bake, I love to do anything artistic. The question is, where do I start and how do I start? Also, what do I do? Do I start selling my pictures? Do I start a dog bakery (don't laugh - I bake Penny treats all the time and she loves them)? And most of all, how do I get the motivation to do that? This afternoon, I turned on the TV and Katie Couric's new talk show had just started. I never watch this show, No offense, Kaite, I've just never had much interest. Today's topic was "Reinventing Yourself." There were stories of several women - all older than me - who had lost their jobs and decided to take a risk and pursue what they loved and were passionate about and through the sacrifices and perseverance, made it. The author of this book was on the show and I think I might need to go get it:

OK, Katie, you sold me. I'll give your show another shot.

Anyway, those are my inspirational stories of the day. I have a lot to think about and a lot to be thankful for.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Baby shower owls

So, remember how I told you that I was 2 hours into my trip back down to Tampa for my sister-in-law's baby shower and forgot my camera? Still bitter about that, but I forgot that I had taken some pics of my decorations beforehand to show my mom. I thought they turned out quite cute so I wanted to share them with you. Her baby shower theme was "owls" (it was also gender neutral since she doesn't know what she's having), hence the greens and yellows.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Happy birthday to me!

This past Saturday was my 33rd birthday. 33...I have no idea how I got to that age. Time has flown WAY too fast! October is a crazy month for us because Mike's birthday is 10/2, mine is 10/13, my dad is 10/14, my mom is 10/16 and my sister is 10/18. I've always been on the fence deciding if I ever want to try and have kids in October. Part of me doesn't think I have the energy to add another date to the October calendar and the other part of me says screw it, just get all the birthdays done at once.
Since the weather has been nothing short of gorgeous here lately, Mike decided to surprise me with a little day trip to Helen, GA. It's north of Atlanta, about an hour and a half drive. Supposedly, Helen is supposed to be one of the best places to see the changing of the leaves in the Fall here in Georgia, and it definitely did not disappoint! A few people we ran into there said to come back in a few weeks when the leaves are mostly all red and orange and it's even prettier. We may head up there early to mid November and check it out again.
In addition to walking around Unicoi State Park, we hung out at Helen's famous Oktoberfest. Helen is a quaint, little German town. I seriously felt like I was in Epcot - all the buildings look like something out of Germany, but almost in an over-the-top way. Every year, they host an Oktoberfest that goes on for a few weeks - lots of crowds, beers and food. It was a fun time - I'd definitely go back. And no, I felt no shame in talking my way into free birthday beer when the bartenders would ask for my I.D. And yes, it worked :)

Thursday, October 11, 2012


Hello, friends! So, I've been giving a lot of thought to my blogging life lately. For those of you who didn't know, I had another blog that I had started just after Mike and I got married. It was just a personal, every day blog. When we were planning our wedding, I had started a blog on our wedding website and after the wedding was over, people had asked if I would continue writing. I thought it would be fun so I began a blog called The Tall & the small (played on the fact that my husband is 6'3 and I'm 5'2. I know, I know.). Once I began this blog in January, I had all intentions of making this blog solely about photography and the other would be personal. Well, not that running 2 blogs is hard to do or anything, but I noticed that I started writing more entries on this blog in addition to my pictures. In doing so, I wouldn't write on my other blog since I didn't want to be repetitive. The result of that was some neglect to my poor, little Tall & small. So, I decided that I would call it quits on the other blog and combine them both into one blog - this one. I'm still going to post tons of pictures as usual. The only difference is that I'm going to do more writing in addition to my pictures. I really do enjoy blogging, I just figured it would make more sense to have one, not two, since they're so similar. Lately I've been toying with the idea of starting a food blog...I love to cook and bake (I even bake for my dog now), so I thought of maybe turning that into a new project. We'll see...I'm getting off track. One thing at a time :)

Anyway, that's the little change that will be taking place. Still lots of great pics, but also some more writing, more posts. Some might have pictures to accompany them and some might not. You'll get to know me a little better and you'll have some more things to read when you're at work but not really working (don't lie - you know you're nodding your head "yes" at that!). Hopefully that's cool with all of you. I really do appreciate each and every one of you out there in the blog world who reads this. Every time I log into Blogger and see that I've gotten more hits, it makes me smile. I don't know who you are but I do want to say thank you! I also added the link on the side of my page in case you want to follow my blog. No pressure - I know you still read it :) 

We're going to some Fall festivals this weekend (hooray for Atlanta and this AWESOME Fall weather!), so I'll have some new pics and posts coming soon. Last weekend, we went back to Tampa for my sister-in-law's baby shower on Saturday and my friend Stacy's baby shower on Sunday. Two hours into our trip, I realized my camera bag was sitting on the bedroom floor. I seriously asked Mike if we could turn around and he looked at me like I had eight heads. He was behind the wheel, otherwise our 7.5 hour trip would have turned into an 11.5 hour trip. I was beyond bummed out but made the decision that I will now always pack my camera case first. If I forget other things like shampoo and underwear, that's nothing a quick trip to a Target can't fix. My camera, not so much. 

It's getting late so I'm off to bed, my friends. Mike and Penny are both snoring on the couch, so this is my cue to head downstairs and put my pajamas on. Hope you're on board with my little changes and keep an eye out for some new posts soon!