RSS

Goodbye Brickyard – Part 2

The following evening was my third and final going away party. I called it the “Drink/eat this so I don’t have to move it” party. I wanted to get rid of as much stuff in my kitchen as possible so I wouldn’t have to move it or throw it out. I also wanted one more chance to play Cards Against Humanity before I lived with a four year-old and would have to watch my language.

If you haven’t heard of Cards Against Humanity, then you are missing out. Ever played Apples to Apples? It’s like that, but wrong. Just check out their website.

Two of my best friends from high school drove 3 ½ hours to come see me, which blew me away. But that’s what great friends do, right? Also a college friend, Sally, came by. I’d seen her by coincidence a few years ago, when we were both at the Butler bookstore during the basketball team’s second Final Four appearance (in a row!). But we just briefly chatted then. This gave us an opportunity to catch up a bit more and just hang out, something I wish I’d strived to do more with Sally while I was still in Indy. Patti also came, though not her two young girls, who I’d babysat a few times before. After all, it was a grown up night and no one under the age of 18 should be exposed to Cards Against Humanity. But she told me that when the girls heard I was moving away, they said, “I thought she was going to babysit us forever!” It was very sweet, but I have my own family to babysit for now.

When the crowd was down to just a handful of us and the game was getting old, we switched to another one of my favorite card games: Anomia. Basically, everyone has a stack of cards and they each take turns to flip one up in front of them. Each card has a symbol and a subject, like “Mystery Novelist” or “Famous Ghost”. If the symbols from two cards match, the players must name something from the other person’s card first. The first person to correctly name something, gets the other person’s card. In the end, the person with the most cards won, wins. It sounds pretty easy, but if you play it, you will find that thinking on the spot and under pressure makes for a lot of “uhs” and “ums” and will make even the smartest person look stupid. For example, I had to name a famous astronaut. Not hard: Neil Armstrong. But then I had to name a famous inventor. Because this card was with the same player as the previous one, my mind automatically went to my last answer and I’d blurted out, “Neil Armstrong!” So, after a few rounds and many, many laughs with that game, the party dispersed.

The next morning my mom arrived to help with final preparations and take my cat to her new home. Dad arrived a few days later and the next day we packed up the truck* and hit the road, leaving the Brickyard behind.

*Actually, I hired people to pack the truck for us. Best use of my money ever.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on July 10, 2013 in About me

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Goodbye Brickyard – Part 1

After my first going away party, I had a second, smaller party at one of Indy’s best pizza places: Bazbeaux Pizza. When Jess learned that I was going there before coming to Virginia, she asked me to bring her some (like it would last that long!). That’s how good Bazbeaux is.

I first experienced Bazbeaux my sophomore year at Butler University, when a group I participated in went out to Broad Ripple, the strip of bars and restaurants frequented by students. A few people in the group were vegetarian, like me. Having not been to Bazbeaux before, I thought that I was in for just some plain ol’ cheese pizza (which I enjoy, don’t get me wrong, but it’s not very exciting). Low and behold, they had just as many specialty vegetarian pizzas as they did for the meat eaters. There was a Chipotle pizza with black bean sauce rather than marinara, a Greek pizza with feta cheese and spinach, a Spring pizza with carrots and broccoli. There were so many choices, I didn’t know where to start! Thankfully, another vegetarian helped me out, as we would have to split the pizzas between several people. That day I tried the Chipotle pizza. It was different and a bit unusual, but I liked it.

The next time my family visited me, I insisted that we go to Bazbeaux. They instantly loved it, too, and it became a regular place for us to dine when they were in town.

So, after more than a decade of decadent pizza, I naturally had to give the place a proper farewell. When a coworker suggested dinner when she couldn’t make it to my first going away party at Mediterra (also in Broad Ripple), I picked Bazbeaux to be the place. The branch we went to was in Carmel, though, close to work. The group was smaller, but it consisted of people who couldn’t make it to the first party, so it turned out perfectly.

DSCN0059

After dinner, I asked if someone would help me with another tradition that Jess and I partook in: posing with the statues in the Arts & Design District. Everyone decided to come on the outing. There was a fairly new statue that Jess and I never got a picture with because we couldn’t think of anything to do with it. The statue was a lady walking a small dog. I thought it might be funny to pose as if I were peeing on the dog:

DSCN0061

Of course, it just looks like I’m trying to kick them at a weird angle, but that worked as that was my signature move for many statues over the years. Then someone suggested that I make it look like I was about to slap the woman:

DSCN0062

And that was the end of my second going away party and the last time I’ll have Bazbeaux pizza (until I save up enough money to go visit!).

A few days after the Bazbeaux outing, I had my final shift at the store. A few friends popped in to say goodbye, which was great. Toward the end of my shift, though, I was ushered into the back to enjoy some gourmet cupcakes (I had a cream-cicle flavored one! Yummy!) and to open my going away present from the staff. One of my coworkers and great friend Burt is an illustrator (a great one at that!). He’d drawn a picture of me and my nephew donned in Hogwarts outfits and holding hands. We each had a wand, spraying out hearts, and above our heads he wrote, “Have a ‘magical’ time with your nephew!” The matte around the illustration was signed by my coworkers, wishing me luck and saying goodbye.

DSCN0063

I currently have it sitting on the nightstand to I can see it as I lay down at night and wake up in the morning. When I get my own place, I will hang it on the wall and display it proudly. My friends’ words of love and support are very precious to me.

Once my shift was over, I went around to the staff that was there and got some more pictures to remember them by:

DSCN0067 DSCN0068 DSCN0069   DSCN0073 DSCN0074 DSCN0075 DSCN0076

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on July 8, 2013 in About me, Food

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Goodbye friends

Yesterday was my first goodbye party for former and current coworkers. We were at Mediterra Restaurant in Broad Ripple*. I started the night with the passion fruit Sangria and the pesto flat bread (pesto, feta, Kalamata olives, and red onion on flat bread – perfecto!).

Of course, the company was fabulous and I was able to catch up with some friends I hadn’t seen in awhile. I was also able to get pictures of everyone before I left so I can have a scrapbook full of my friends’ faces!

Here’s a group shot:

Group shot before a fond farewell!

Group shot before a fond farewell!

I am in the first row, second from the right. The picture I’m holding in my hand is one of my nephew. Since he is the reason I am moving, I only found it fitting that he be in the picture as well.

My favorite part, though, had to be when someone was taking a photo of me with another person and said, “Is it just me or is this blurry? I can’t tell; I’ve been drinking wine.” It was, in fact, a blurry photo, but it was still funny!

All together it was a great night and only a few tears were shed on my part (after almost everyone was gone). I have a spectacular group of coworkers because they are also my friends. I will miss them all!

*Broad Ripple is in Indianapolis and it is where many 20 and 30-somethings go for dining and drinks.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on June 3, 2013 in About me

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

T minus 12 days

The last time I posted, I wrote about finding a job so I could uproot my life and move closer to my family. Well, I I finally landed a job and have been in the process of packing and tying up loose ends for the past several weeks. In exactly 12 days, however, I will have my moving truck loaded and I’ll be hitting the road.

I’ve already had to say a couple of goodbyes. One to a great friend and coworker who is out now out of town on vacation. Another to a fun guy that I was just starting to get to know. Tomorrow, I have my farewell dinner and drinks with whatever coworkers can make it. I am still working this week, though, so I’ll have plenty of opportunity to say goodbye to my coworkers. Then, the day after my last day at my job, I’m having friends over to consume everything in my kitchen (so I don’t have to move it) and play games. This will be my final face-to-face farewell.

I haven’t been as teary-eyed as I thought I would. I think part of it is because I still have so much to do and the scope of the journey I’m about to embark on hasn’t fully sunk in yet. Part may be because I hold hope that I’ll see my friends again if they ever make it out to DC and/or I come back for a visit. One reason for sure, though, is because I’m so excited to meet my nephew and finally be near family and that excitement has pushed away any fear, worry, sadness that I may feel. The sadness probably won’t really hit me until I lock my apartment door for the last time and hit the road. I’ll say one final goodbye in my car as I leave the city that holds my friends – my second family – who’ve loved and supported me for the past 13 years.

For all of you who I consider a friend, thank you, from the bottom of my heart. I wouldn’t have made it through many holidays without you opening your homes and arms to me. I wouldn’t have sought the help I needed when dark thoughts settled on my mind. I wouldn’t have the knowledge or confidence about myself without you to help me see it. In short, I would not be the strong person I am today without you. It’s because I’m strong that I’m able to uproot my life and start over in a new place. Gracias.

(Shit. Now I’m crying.)

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on June 1, 2013 in About me

 

Tags: , , , ,

Tuesday, Wednesday, happy day!

Tuesdays at the CastleCastle Glower is no ordinary castle. Its alive, or as alive as a castle can be. On Tuesdays while King Glower is busy hearing his subjects, the castle rearranges itself to stave off boredom. Sometimes it even builds new rooms. Princess Celie, the youngest of the four royal children, has a special bond with the castle; it seems to favor her. Perhaps it’s because she’s the first person in its long history to attempt to draw a map of the castle, but no one knows for certain. What is obvious, though, is that Castle Glower helps Celie, along with her sister Lilah, brother Rolf, and friend Pogue, when the king, queen, and eldest son go missing. The royal council declares them dead, making 14-year-old Rolf king, but the children don’t give up hope so easily. The castle helps them sneak around and spy on guests to see if they are friends or foes.

Although Tuesdays in the Castle by Jessica Day George is a children’s book, it captures the hearts of all ages. The writing is light but the action is packed and there’s comedy throughout. The book was a fast read for me, but I enjoyed every bit of it. Prince Lulath was a particularly fun character because his English isn’t very good and he always has his four precious doggies with him. Celie is the main star of the show and readers will be drawn to her kind heart and loyalty to her family and Castle Glower.

***Spoiler Alert***

The sequel, Wednesdays in the Tower, is set to be released May 7, 2013. I had the privilege to read a digital ARC.

Wednesdays in the TowerIn the second book, the king, queen, and eldest son Bran have returned to Castle Glower. This time the castle shows Celie a tower with no roof and a rather mysterious occupant – an egg. It’s no ordinary egg, though. It’s huge and orange, like the color of flame, and is hot to the touch. At first Celie thinks it might be a dragon egg, but soon she learns that it’s actually a griffin egg. Griffins were thought to be mythical creatures, but Celie knows that it is not so. Bran, Pogue, and Rolf all help Celie gather information about griffins, from books in the castle library to old tapestries hanging on the wall depicting humans riding griffins in battle. They know that all of this ties into the history of the castle, where it came from (legend has it that it just appeared one day), and why it has started acting strangely. They just need to figure out how it all ties together.

Again, the writing was light with just the right mixture of action, comedy, and mystery. The history of Castle Glower starts to come to light in the sequel, as well as its capabilities. Celie starts questioning where all those rooms come from on Tuesdays and where do they go when the castle gets rid of them. Many readers probably asked the same questions when reading Tuesdays and George found a good way of addressing those questions without giving everything away right at once. In fact, she doesn’t give everything away in the book, but leaves it with a cliffhanger, an open ending just begging for another sequel. Which brings me to my totally selfish whine: I want to know what happens! The next book likely won’t be out until summer of 2014. I can’t wait that long! Why did I foolishly pick up the first book (and enjoy it, along with the second book) when the series is still being written? Argh!

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on March 26, 2013 in Literature

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Check this out!

Happy First Day of Spring!.

The above link is to a blog written by my dear friend, Lisa. It is dedicated to picture books. I always love her recommendations – they are always on the mark! Please check out her blog!

 
1 Comment

Posted by on March 20, 2013 in Literature

 

Tags: , , ,