Top 10 Signs I’m Getting Old . . .

Pam, Heather, Maggie on the South Campus Bus

Pam, Heather, Maggie on the South Campus Bus

10.) I actually bought a vacuum last night. Not only had I made price comparisons and a bit of research beforehand, but I was thrilled to find that the actual vacuum I wanted was on sale. I’m counting it as the best purchase I’ve made all month . . . Sigh. Remember the days when that title went to a bangin’ new purse or that new kind of mascara Drew Barrymore’s always talking about? (p.s. I love that mascara!) Continue reading

A New State of Mind

My new house in Kutztown, PA

My new house in Kutztown, PA

It’s been a hectic week so far. I left DC Friday morning, dropped off some stuff in Kutztown and signed my lease then drove back to Albany. I spent the night there, then drove BACK here again in the morning on Saturday. It’s Sunday night now and I’ve gotten sort of settled in my new place. Work starts tomorrow morning, then I have to drive back to Albany again Tuesday morning for my Uncle Rick‘s funeral. I’ll stay up there til Thursday morning, then drive back down so I can get back to work on Friday morning.

Big Mama’s been working overtime, that’s for sure. It’s about a 500 mile roundtrip to head home and back, and she’s in need of an oil change (and a car wash!) But while life has been a bit crazy lately, I’ve been able to feel out Kutztown and the greater Lehigh Valley since my arrival here yesterday. I did a dry-run to work this morning (yea, I know it’s dorky, but that’s one of those things I just have to do before I start a new job).

 Route 222 toward Reading is a popular road I guess . . .

Route 222 toward Reading is a popular road I guess . . .

Then I went to the store and got a few things for my house. On my way there I got stuck behind a horse and buggy — I kid you not! My Big Cuz (who went to Kutztown University) had warned me about the possibility of this happening, but I had brushed him off, thinking he was pulling my leg. Leg unpulled. The Amish rep this hood in full force.

And as much as I’ve been grumbling about it, I have to admit, I kind of like Pennsylvania so far.  I found a great family-owned pizza joint down the street from me with a killer calzone last night, and I’m surrounded by farm land (score! Farm Girl gives Two Thumbs Up for this one), cute farm houses, homemade chocolate shops and other quaintdorable little businesses. Not to mention mini-golf (which Boyf will fall victim to when he emerges from Studyville in a couple weeks). And I’m really close to Reading, which is where Jon and Kate (plus 8!) live. I’m totally gonna try to find them.

Work’s not too far away, and there’s a Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks (coffee, coffee, coffee) right on my way — and my gym is there too. Cuz coffee is a fit body’s number one enemy. Unforch.

Again, if anyone knows of cool things to do in Kutztown or nearby please let me know!!! I’m hoping to make the most out of the next six months 🙂

Today’s pix taken with my phone . . . sorry bout the quality.

Growing Wheels

I really feel like I might be growing wheels. And if that’s not scientifically possible, then I guess I should just say my butt is perpetually numb, and taking the shape of a car seat.

Boyf and I finished our mini-road trip (I mean, 1,200 miles isn’t a real road trip, is it?) on Monday Dec. 22. Then on the morning of the 23, I drove 6 hours to the tippy-top of the Green Mountain State with Dad and Big Sis to ski for a week. Fast forward to this Monday (Dec. 29) when I was back in the car for the return trip “Home.”

I’ve been here about 24 hours now. And I’m just about all packed for a quick stop in NEPA to hit up Boyf for a cup of coffee, on my way to Washington D.C. to spend New Years Eve with the rest of the USATODAY interns (man I miss my crew). I’ll be in D.C. til Friday, at which point I’ll be driving through Kutztown (that’s in Pennsylvania for those of you who don’t know) to pick up a key to my new apartment. I’ll spend the afternoon moving a few things in, then drive back to NY (“Home”), grab the rest of my stuff and move in for real on Saturday.

Work starts Monday.

So — sorry for the massively boring post. Just wanted you to know why I wouldn’t be posting for the next couple days. Also, if anyone knows of any great places to eat (or drink) in Kutztown or the greater Lehigh Valley, please let me know.

Til next time (next state?).

Don’t Call It A RunningBack

Jay Peak, VermontI think we were about 5 minutes into the first run of the day when I took the big slide. I had reached the crest of a hill, at which point I caught a death cookie and crashed face-first into the snow. If only I had been able to stop at that – but gravity being what it is, I continued to travel down the mountain, face-first on my tummy (like a home-made Maggie Sled) for about 60 yards.

Sixty yards on the first play of the game? If I was a running back, I could have single handedly saved Greg Robinson’s career. Alas, I’m just a washed-up former skier who can’t quite find her footing. At least I can say I stayed on my feet for the rest of the day (save one or two quick indiscretions). It’s a good thing too. I’ve got a bruise the size of a small piñata on my right hip and the last thing I need is to match it on the other side, or add an addition.

Dad Chomps Cookies in a GladeLucky for me, my father was able to take over my spot as Spill-Master Extraordinaire. Looks to me like he has a hankering for those cookies. He took a helluva fall earlier this morning in a glade before taking the Dive To End All Dives on our last run this afternoon. Picture this: Giant farmer comes over the crest of a hill in a large banana suit, chews cookie, splats on face, and continues down the hill on his back for about 70 yards (breaking my own record – the Orange haven’t seen a play like that since Floyd Little), skidding so fast and forcefully that both his skis sailed off along the way.

Wow.

And so the Running Back of the Year Award goes to my Dad, Sandy Gordon, for successfully rushing 70 yards for a totally gnarly TD between two trees.

Give that man a cookie.

White Christmas Indeed!

My Dad, sister and I decided to spend Christmas skiing in Vermont this year. So here we are at Jay Peak, in the northern-most tip of the state. It was about a 5 hour drive here (the day after arriving home from the three-day trek back from Bama), and we were on skis within about an hour of our arrival.

I used to be a pretty good skier back in the day. Mom, Dad, Sarah and I would head out about 20 times a year, and we would spend a week here at Jay every February. But it’s been about seven years since I’ve touched skis. The results are halfway between pathetic and hilarious, especially as I try keeping up with my sister Sarah (who was the captain of her ski team at college and had a season pass to this very mountain for the last two winters), and my father (who at the age of . . . well, old . . . can still boogie down the hills with the best of them).

Day one saw me on SnowBlades after convincing myself they would be a smoother adjustment. Shorter means less chance of tip-crossing, right? I managed to make it through the day without falling.

Day two on the other hand . . . well, see for yourself. On the plus side, I didn’t hurt myself on the slopes. I did however suffer a minor shoulder injury in the lodge. More on that to come I’m sure.

Merry Christmas to all who are celebrating today, and I hope to have more pathetic/hilarious pictures for you to check out through the rest of the week!

 

pictures provided by Sarah Gordon

Long, Strange Trip

I have to admit I was sad to see Alabama go as Boyf and I blew out of town the other day. Three days and 1,200 miles later, I’m back in the northeast.

 

Kennedy kicked him out of the car

Kennedy kicked him out of the car

It’s hard to believe it was Boyf’s first real road trip. I mean, he’s 23 years old. But I have to say he did a good job hanging in there, and we managed to make it back home without any major problems. (Unless you count the emergency Boyf-pick-up in Atlanta due to weather-related flight delays and cancellations) No tow-truck experiences at the Philadelphia city line, no running through police barriers in downtown Philly, no multiple car stalls in a Virginia rest area, and no smoking engine on the highway to the Gulf Coast – not that I’ve had any (cough, all) of those experiences at one point or another . . .

 

 

Instead I got to see some quality Boyf-Kennedy bonding. Although she did try to kick him out of the car and score an extra seat for herself as we entered Virginia on night one. And they clearly still have their differences.

 

Blue Plate Diner, Chattanooga Tennessee

We found a great place to eat in Chattanooga, Tennessee (by “we found” I mean “my boss recommended”). If you’re ever in Chattanooga you should definitely stop by the Blue Plate Diner – it’s right next to the aquarium downtown, and they have great food. Be warned though, it’s not typical diner food, but my shrimp taco was amazing, and I don’t remember seeing any scraps of fried chicken left on Boyf’s plate.

 

 

The rain really started barreling down after we left the diner and continued through the rest of Tennessee and into Virginia. Needless to say we got slowed down a bit from the weather and ended up staying in Blacksburg instead of Fort Royal, setting us a bit behind. (I blame this completely on Boyf, who always drives the speed limit . . . SLOW)

 

So the next day we woke up and checked out of our five-star accommodations (Super-Eight anyone?) to hit the road again. We had to fly drive through Philadelphia quick to grab his suitcase, which he tied to the roof of my already-overloaded station wagon – Kennedy and I thoroughly enjoyed watching him circle the car with rope in hand as he was fastening the bag to the top. It was like watching a medieval kid play with a May Pole – which set us back another couple hours. So I ended up crashing with his family in Scranton.

 

The next morning I was off and home, just me and the cat. I’m not quite sure if she missed him.

     

Kennedy debates whose company she prefers. Maggie wins.

Kennedy debates whose company she prefers. Maggie wins.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You Can Run, But You Cant Hide

Maggie and Kayleigh

Maggie and Kayleigh

I met my best friend about three years ago, when we were Resident Advisors in the same building back in college. We had too much in common not be friends, and before long we were a bit on the inseparable side. I even flew to England when she spent a semester studying abroad in London.

 

Before I flew up to see her this past weekend, we had gone almost three months without a visit – that’s a record for us. What I’ve found after a reunion weekend is that we’ve both changed, like I knew we would, but we both still get each other.

 

Apparently I have a bit of a twang now, after five months in Alabama. I don’t believe her. Not that it matters, because she has a bit of an attitude after moving to Manhattan.

 

She says I cook too often, and it scares her that I own an apron. You wanna know what scares me? Her food bill is astronomical! She goes out to eat for every meal, and has yet to really go grocery shopping. (Of course, we already knew this about her).

 

Kayleigh says I’ve gone soft – fixing up care packages for Boyf. I say she could use some of my design tips to spruce up her bland cubicle.

 

It’s nice to know that with 1,000 miles between us, we’re so similar we can still drive each other up a wall with nit-picking. I hope we continue annoying and harassing each other for decades to come.