Thursday, September 16, 2010

People in Your Life

People come into your life for a reason,a season or a lifetime. When you know which one it is,you will know what to do for that person...When someone is in your life for a REASON,it is usually to meet a need you have expressed.They have come to assist you through a difficulty,to provide you with guidance and support,To aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually.They may seem like a godsend and they are.They are there for the reason you need them to be.Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time, this person will say or dosomething to bring the relationship to an end.Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away.Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand.What we must realize is that our need has been met,our desire fulfilled, their work is done.The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.Some people come into your life for a SEASON,because your turn has come to share, grow or learn.They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh.They may teach you something you have never done.They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy.Believe it, it is real. But only for a season.LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons,things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation.Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life.It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.Thank you for being a part of my life,whether you were a reason, a season or a lifetime.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Amazing Woman of the Week - JANE ROOS


Let me tell you a little something about my good friend Jane....

There are probably not enough words in the dictionary to describe her, but I'll do my best. Not only is she larger than life, but one of the most incredible women I have ever been fortunate to come across. She is going to blush when she reads this I'm sure, but I'm doing it anyways (love you Jane).

There are people out there that have an energy that is unlike anything you've ever felt. It's not that she just lights up a room when she walks into it, but she has the uncanny ability to inspire, motivate and fuel the people around her. She's magnetic. An athlete, business woman, wife, mother, artist, humanitarian...the list goes on and on. It's no wonder she's one of the most influential women in sport in this country.

The founder of the Canadian Athletes Now Fund, which has donated millions of dollars to struggling Canadian Athletes, Jane has dedicated her life to giving back and making a difference. She always leaves me in awe and I've said this before, but she makes me realize that the whole world is at the tip of my fingers.

Her overwhelming genorosity speaks volumes to the kind of person she is. Thank you for always sending out so much love, grace and strength into this world.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Adult Wonderland

Flying over the Grand Canyon on my way to Las Vegas last week I remember a sense of calmness that came over me. That would be the last time the word calm would come to my mind over the next few days. I was glued to the window on this tiny plane and couldn't take my eyes off the incredible view. It was a gorgeous day, clear blue skies and I could see the sandy desert and rugged mountain range that cuts across the south. I've traveled the world and haven't seen anything like it in awhile - actually not what I was expecting of Vegas.

When you think Las Vegas what really comes to mind? Let's all be honest - not the beauty of it.

Touching down I could already feel the energy rising on the plane. A group of guys on their way to a bachelor party - attempting to recreate 'The Hangover' I'm almost positive, couples looking for a wild weekend and girls leaving their boyfriends at home....the energy was rowdy and debaucherous and we were still on the plane.


The best way I can describe Vegas to people is an Adult Amusement Park. Anything goes and I mean anything. My shuttle bus driver to the hotel gave a little tour guide for all the newbies and you already knew it was going to be trouble. The amount of people, little rules, tons of distractions (in every kind of way) and entertainment overwhelms you. The strip during the day is still as incredible as it is at night. 6 miles long (wear flats ladies) stores, street performers, fountains, restaurants and loud music fill the streets. I'm pretty sure that no one should ever drive there as pedestrians couldn't care less about street lights, signs...basically anything that's in their way of more drinks and gambling.

I was in town for two days - short but definitely sweet. My trip was a whirlwind of little sleep and the most fun I've had in a long time. You literally feel like you're in another world....in over load. Met incredible people, pretended I was wealthy enough to go into all the designer stores and tried things on (so fun) and didn't wipe the smile off my face.

I'm keeping all the details my dirty little secret

Thank you Nevada and Good Night

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Vegas Bound

I'm about to board my flight, but wanted to get this down before I forget that it ever happened because it kinda made my day. Actually, pretty sure it just set up my entire time in Nevada - thank god for that airport currency exchange lady or else waking up so damn early and fighting with my mother on the way to the airport might have ruined my day....

SO I breeze through security and customs down to the States (faster than normal) and get to my gate in one piece - after getting harassed by the creepy airport security guys (fuuunnn). I mean seriously, if you look down my shirt one more time and snicker to your little buddies behind your big, tough shiny table I might lose it.

I digress.

So I had some time to kill and was wandering around people watching, one of my all time favorite activities. When I see this currency exchange booth and I figured that it made sense to get some American dollars if I'm heading down to Vegas. Just being practical.

Here I am, chatting away with the very friendly woman who is probably about my mom's age behind the glass. She asks me if I like big bills or small bills and I say small - always love having cash on me for once (I'm hiding my bank card). She starts counting it out then stops and looks up at me (knowing that I'm going to Vegas) and says with a little smirk on her face - "want some one dollar bills too?"

It took me a second, but I got it. Vegas. One dollar bills. Awesome. So I laughed said well yes I think I may be needing those and she blushed a bit and said she knows what goes on in Nevada!

AMAZING - smiled all the way to the gate

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Biting the Bullet


Things have definitely changed since we've all grown up. My parents live in our childhood house, my sister is off with her boyfriend and I've been a downtown single girl for awhile now. Getting ready for the next stage in my life I know I needed to make a big sacrifice and save up as much as I can to buy a place of my own. The first step in that plan was the unthinkable - moving back home.

So here I am - sitting on the same couch where I held hands with a boy for the first time, did my homework and collapsed on after a long day of gymnastics training

It's a little weird, but I'm surviving (acclimatizing I like to call it)

There is one thing that I never noticed before and I realize that I'm going to have to bite the bullet on this one and just keep my mouth shut - or else I'm sure there will be trouble. So I've become aware of my parents (mostly my dad) talking out loud to themselves on a pretty regular basis. It's not just talking to themselves though it's just saying out loud what they are going to do next. They narrate their lives. I mean, do I need to know that you're going to change your pants now because you don't have pockets and you can't put your keys in them when you go and work out, but only after you brush your teeth? Not really.

I love you guys, but it's an over share. I'm going to bite my tongue, but let's see how you like it when I do it :)

xo

Monday, August 30, 2010

Bittersweet

Since I was a little girl my parents always taught my sister and I that when you make a commitment to something you keep it. Your dedication and promise to someone or something meant more than just simple words. That is something that has stuck with me my whole life. When my athletic career began to take off there were times when I didn’t think I was strong enough to do it. Times when I was being pushed to my limits and wanted to be a typical 14 year old and bow out and quit. My parents have been and will always be my biggest fans and supporters. Even though they knew I had the potential to go to the Olympics one day, they would have let me quit if I wanted to. As long as my sister and I were happy, we could do whatever we wanted.

There was just one rule.

If I committed to competing for a season, I was competing for that season. The time, energy and sacrifice of so many people around me to prepare for a competitive year on the international gymnastics scene was huge. Everyone becomes emotionally invested because they are basically a team of people trying to get the absolute best out of you. I remember my coach would have trouble sleeping if I wasn’t training well before a big meet and my club and all the families would fundraise to send me to another world cup I couldn’t pay for. It wouldn’t just affect me if I stopped cold turkey, it would affect everyone around me and was ungrateful.

So even now, how many years later, I still keep that at heart. When I decided I needed to make a big change in my life, I did it and didn’t think too much about it. After two years of living with a great friend I just pretty abruptly got out of my lease. A few months ago it didn’t seem like that big of a deal, but as I began to pack up my things and say goodbye to the all the people and memories that have come and gone I wanted to go back on my word and stay.

There were definitely a few moments where I doubted if I had made the right choice this week. Standing on my balcony last night for the last time with my last roommate was hard. My room an empty shell, our place not ours anymore. It’s funny because I never thought I would get this choked up, but my life was that place. It was easy and comfortable and fun. I lived with my best friend for two years, it’s sad to think we’ll never be able to be that close again. I mean, seeing her struggle to get up and out of bed every morning is probably one of the most amusing things ever…going on last minute unexpected adventures in the city is up there too.

I spent my first night in a new bed, in a new room and it was weird. Something that will take time to get used to for sure. I know deep down that this is what I have to do and moving out on my own is a little scary, but it’s that next step. It’s time to grow up.

“last night in the condo. too blurryto even cry. music was just how i like it. deal with the ghetto. love you more than you know. brazilians what? 4am sweet potatoe fries. much love babe”

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Learned My Lesson

I had a very humbling moment last night. I'm not even sure if humbling is the right word to describe it, but it was one of those times where you all of a sudden see yourself and your friends in a different light. A year ago this conversation would not have gone the way it did and that's ok, but it was different yesterday for a reason.

We get so caught up in the past and history and things that once seemed life ending that we forget how much we've grown and how far we've come from that point. I didn't see it until now.

I didn't give my best friend the credit she deserved, I didn't give her the benefit of the doubt that yes maybe she just did want me to be happy. Drama and scandals and gossip have surrounded my young adulthood and I couldn't open my eyes wide enough to see that we're past all that.

I sat across from her with an open heart for the first time in a long time and thought I would lose her. I was stupid to think that she would go anywhere. She's been there for me through everything and believe me I didn't have the typical problems that teenagers go through...but she never ran like so many others before her did.

I wish that I had realized we were grown ups a long time before I knew it, but maybe I wasn't ready to see it then.

Funny how life works sometimes.

As the words fell from my lips I knew that I had done the right thing. The last thing I have ever wanted was to hurt her, but keeping things hidden just makes it worse in the end.

Thank you for being such an amazing person. I don't deserve you in my life. I just wish I had been stronger to come to you earlier...

before i lost it, before i gave up on something,before i hurt him


I love you.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Who doesn't know this?


Alright I need to put this out there because I actually don't believe that the majority of people don't know what this expression means...

If someone says I am falling down the rabbit hole please tell me that the general population would recognize that it's a very famous line from Alice in Wonderland or at least understand what it's referring to...

I realize that if you didn't grow up in a Disney household (which kinda makes me sad) you may have not seen it, but at some point at some time in your life you would've had to run into this saying and asked what it meant...I mean cmon!

FYI - falling down the rabbit hole means your world is turning upside down and you don't know what's what or what's real anymore...basically spiraling downward into an alternate universe or frame of mind

Just in case you are one of those people that didn't know.

Worst pick up line of the night..

I have two questions for you...

#1 - are you single? 100%?
#2 - what time do you work in the morning?

Boys please don't try this one.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Something in your eyes

You can see right through me when you're looking into my eyes. No matter what kind of front I'm putting up or how tough I think I am standing there...my eyes give it all away. Everytime.

I think that's why I'm always always in big sunglasses...and here I thought it was just a fun fashion statement...your mind plays tricks on you sometimes...(go figure)

It's funny - it's so easy to hide emotion behind that thin dark piece of plastic, putting up a wall between you and the person sitting literally at arms length.

A quiet defense, a piece of armor to slip away with dignity.

Yet the second they come off your face you lose the battle. Your achilles heel. Your wounds open for anyone to see.

Making it too easy for you.

Cover your eyes little girl, it's not worth it.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Am I really an author now...

I grew up hating english in school. I was the math/science girl - yes a little bit of a nerd too which I whole heartedly embraced. The writing thing was never my forte. I struggled with essays and could never express myself, not to mention my sister was the gifted writer in the family. An incredible poet, speaker, actress, singer...she is the creative one and I happily assumed the role as the athlete. No complaints there.

So it's kind of ironic now that I started to write a few years ago and then dabbled in some blogs for CBC, the Toronto Star, Lenovo, Commonwealth Games Canada, the Strength Within Group...

I honestly began to love it. Working with an editor at CBC was one of the greatest experiences in my professional career. Not only did he help me hone my writing skills, but got me to open up and write in a way that could affect people.

Raw emotion.

So two years ago when my life changed...

when I lost the thing I loved to do the most, reached a goal I had had my entire life, walked away from someone that I will always hold in my heart, went back to University and had to deal with ten years of putting my body on a wild rollercoaster ride

....The feelings and emotions were too much to even understand or talk about so I started to write. I bought one of those big leather bound sketch books and began to fill it up. From lyrics to journal entries to collages and advertisements that meant something to me - my heart and soul went into it. From this book I found my love of writing and I guess the rest is history.

A few weeks ago I pitched an idea to the President of a Publishing company, Burman Books Inc, that I met out of luck at an event earlier this year. He loved it. I loved it. Long story short, I JUST SIGNED A PUBLISHING CONTRACT TO PUBLISH MY FIRST BOOK NEXT FALL!!!

Does this make me a real author now?! :)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Photo of the Week - the many faces of alex

This is for Nik - I know the facial expressions I somehow come up with never cease to amaze you

Smile for me

It's not a good day when you wake up in the morning and feel that sinking feeling in your stomach - a mixture of insecurity, disappointment, laziness - that weird dulling sensation that seems to take over your mood and everything you touch. It's as if it follows you around desperately clinging to your back like a scared child, bringing you down inch by inch until it overtakes you. Those are those days where you break down and cry - even if you're not a crier. Those are the days where you don't know where it came from or why it's happening, but you're not happy with your life.

I haven't felt like that in a long time, but the more I spend with the people that mean the most to me the more I see them go through it. It's always funny to me because if they saw what I saw - what everyone sees - they couldn't possibly feel this way. I find that people define their lives on what they're doing, how successful they are and the actual tangible 'things' that they have. We all do it, but to a point now where nothing is ever good enough.

I should not be one to talk, but when I see an incredibly talented and inspiring person feeling like they are doing nothing with themselves it infuriates me. Please please open your eyes and see that just being you touches the lives of everyone around you. Believe in yourself and you will do great things because you couldn't not. Stop comparing yourself to other people, we're all on different paths, but it doesn't make you any less of a person.

Smile for me.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Best advice given to me today...

Focus on one difficult relationship where you are bringing a lot of judgement to the table. What's one piece of truth you share in common with the person being judged?

Think about it - it may blow your mind

Taking it back to Sicily



If you've never met a Sicilian before let me fill you in - we are an intense, crazy people that hold our family at the center of our universe.

They are our blood. Our past, present and future. Don't mess with it if you know what's good for you.

So the incredible news that one of my first friends from University may potentially be related to me is possibly the best thing to happen ever. Apparently a Teresa Orlando married a Francesco Agueci way back when in Sicily, joining these two great families together. Basically this is a beyond epic realization and our families are now going to have an even bigger, louder, broken english posse (love you nonna) then ever before :)

Bring it.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Leave Your Boyfriends At Home...



I was literally counting down the seconds until we were on the road heading north this weekend. The past week was a bit of a blur. I was so out of it and a few late nights and early mornings really didn't help me feeling like a complete disaster at work.

Even though we were only going up for one night the five of us girls hadn't all been together in forever. Actually - not sure if all of us have ever done anything like this before. Needless to say, it was much needed and I couldn't wait to escape the city and have a full fledged girls trip.

No boys allowed.

Seriously - probably one of the best weekends of the summer.



I think the combination of hilariously fun girls, sugary beverages in the middle of the day, boating escapades and incredibly cheesy music made the past 36 hours the funniest I've had in a long time. I'm pretty sure I laughed for a good three hours straight at one point - oh and also expressed my love for ms. tash (on multiple occasions)

I know i know. Shocking that my commitment levels just dramatically increased - what can i say she just does that to me? :p

love you girls thanks for an amazing weekend - the boys were definitely not missed
xo

Niki. Steph. Caye. Tash. <3

Friday, August 13, 2010

Awkward Inter-Office Encounter

How is it that only after two weeks in our new office building I have found myself in an awkward social situation already? Only me.

There's only 30 of us from the Pan Am group working here right now - taking up a small corner of the 3rd floor AND forgive me for trying to be friendly and interact with the other companies up here...

Let me be clear...I've been friendly...as in polite chatter in the kitchen and basic conversation in the elevators...i would admit to a little casual flirting believe me

BUT apparently this has compelled someone (who by the way only knows my first name) to somehow find me in the building directory and send me a pretty suggestive email.

what?

So of course I didn't respond, needing to sit on it for a little bit and analyze my next steps without making this a huge deal as I do have to work here for the next few years...BUT my life would have it that as I'm going to grab a cup of tea from the kitchen who do you think I run into?

This was the definition of awkward. I almost wish someone had caught this on camera. Wow.

My friend Jess shot me a glance that almost made me burst out laughing right there...seriously I don't need this drama at work...

So long story short I had to send possibly one of the weirdest emails I've ever written and politely regretted to inform him that I was just not that into him.

I can't even wait for the response.

Another typical Friday for Alex Orlando - awesome

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Stupidity

Since when is "How to break up with her" worthy enough news to be profiled next to a piece on Obama?

I'm sorry, but do guys really need more stupid advice on how to be honest....wait I forgot it was so difficult

I can tell you the easiest way to break up with someone and I don't need 1000 words to say it.

Read my lips.

Don't lie. Don't let your ego get in the way. Be real. Stop trying to be the good guy (you're not remember). Make a clean break.

Now why is that so hard? :)

Photo of the Week - Jarry Naphtal




Stuff Souls are Made Of[ ΩΛΜΟ ] : a selection of works by jarrtan naphtal

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jarry85/show

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

My Source of Strength

The last little while I've been thinking about the people in my life and how incredibly fortunate I am to be surrounded by people who inspire me. Sometimes I think of myself as still a girl, but I'm at that age now where I can comfortably call myself a woman with a smile.

I'm definitely not pretending like I've got it all figured out because I don't and I'll be the first one to tell you that....

But I think of where I've come from and how I'm surviving womanhood now and know that I owe it to those who make me stronger and keep pushing myself to be stronger ever still.

These absolutely incredible women deserve such amazing things in their lives for what they do for others...

Thank you....
for your good heart Marisa
for never leaving my side Victoria
for being my soul sister Annamay
for making me feel like the whole world is at my fingertips Jane
for showing me that I am beautiful Mercy
for helping me find myself Rose
for letting me drive you crazy Niki
for pushing me Gaby
for your brutal honesty Veronica
for always being there Rita
for inspiring me Barbara

When you were young...

When you were young and your heart was an open book...you used to say live and let live...
you know you did

But in this ever changing world in which we live in...makes you give in and cry....
say live and let die


- Paul

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Paranormal Activity?

Call me paranoid, but I swear something freaky is going on in my parent's house. It could be that I just watched this stupid paranormal movie and even though it wasn't that scary it still made me all jumpy OR my house is just possessed. Take your pick.

Alright you may think I've gone completely crazy (which is entirely possible)...but listen to this...

I'm sitting in my dining room with all the lights on working away on my laptop when the lights start flickering. I could hardly notice at first, but then it kept happening. I didn't really think anything of it, but then I just got this really weird feeling. I can work in my dining room all night because believe me I've done it before, but this time I had to get up and move. It was really bizarre.

So it's 1am and I picked up my laptop and stuff to go and leave when the lights went out completely. That has never ever happened to me in my life. Then my dining room door slowly started to open...thankfully we have another door that leads into the kitchen... and needless to say I ran like a crazy person to my room upstairs.

I am fully aware I sound like I'm 12 right now, but I swear this all happened and it really creeped me out...

Could be too many late nights and horror movies, but I doubt I'm going to get any sleep tonight

Beyond Stressed

I think there's a point when you're so stressed out you just become numb. Deadlines are piling up around me and not just at my normal day job. Of course I can't be like every other person and have one job - no I have to be superwoman and have about 5 or 6. Anything else you would like me to take on? I'll probably say yes because apparently I don't know how to say no.

Not a good little pattern I've gotten myself into.

I kind of want to just have a good cry, but...

1) I don't cry (there goes that plan)

AND

2) I can't feel anything to muster up some sort of reaction beyond some sort of intense/empty look on my face

Those of you who really know me, know that I love everything I do. That's the problem. I wouldn't trade my life for anything, but there are those days (and nights like this one) where I honestly don't know how I've gotten myself here. It's 10:51pm and I'm probably going to be pulling an all nighter and heading to a meeting for 8:30am tomorrow. It sounds like it might be a glasses kind of day...maybe they can hide the bags under my eyes...

It's ironic though because I'm not even upset or concerned....just numb. It will get done because I'll make sure it gets done no matter what, but I can't help wondering if my body can put up with it forever. My guess is probably not.

If I can just survive the next two days I'll never do this to myself again.

Who am I kidding - you know I will

If I didn't have my family and friends to pick me up sometimes I don't know what I would do. Thank you for putting up with me and this crazy life. I love you all <3

Reliving the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Bid

video

Monday, August 9, 2010

Never hold anything in

One of my biggest fears is that I will lose someone without telling them how I really feel or how sorry I am. I listen to this song from Paul McCartney to John Lennon and can't help but think no one should ever hold anything back. You never know what will happen tomorrow...but are you brave enough to let go and say it?

video

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DgJw5L_UGAw

Is there any good way to pick someone up in an elevator?

It has come to my attention that there is no smooth way to take innocent flirtatious glances in an elevator to anything more than a frustrated feeling of letting a moment go by.

I am really curious and would love someone else's opinion on the elevator pick up. Do you go up to a different floor and put yourself into a potentially awkward and embarrassing situation when you have no idea where you're going when you get off? Or do you attempt to hit on this person with coworkers in the elevator? That can also not be a good idea. Even if you do have some sort of a connection it lasts all about 30 seconds before one of you jumps off...albeit slower than you normally would...maybe absent minded hoping that they'll stop you?? yeeaaah ok.

Can it be anything more than just a feel good moment? Someone that day finds you attractive - awesome.

Comments are more than welcome here people...

Good Advice...

Monday August 9, 2010

"Most relationships are based on selfish desire where the partner or sibling or friend only worry about their own happiness. There is nothing wrong with wanting to be happy. The problem is life is based on paradoxes...

If we seek happiness for ourselves we receive chaos instead. Yet, when we strive to make others happy, we ourselves receive happiness. The more we share with others, the more is shared with us.

Yes, there is a balance. No, we are not meant to become doormats. Learning when enough is enough is another topic, but it's enough now that you notice those situations where it's all about you.

This is the secret of happiness. Now you know. Today, put your knowing into action."

Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Drunk Text

We've all done it before. Regardless of what is going on in your life, you know that there is that one particularly annoying person that you've either dated, had an insane obsession with or found yourself caught up in a mind game with that you're not going to win...don't lie I know you know what I'm talking about.

This person for some reason even though you deleted them off facebook and bbm is still in your phone...a # somewhere in there that you keep for no good reason...well just to torture yourself with.

So it's a late night and you've had one too many rye and gingers or vodka rocks (that would be me) AND instead of phoning because that would just be stupid you send them a nasty text - good, bad whatever...anything you've said in there is going to make your cringe the next day.

BUT I found out that what's even worse than the drunk text, which can usually be blown off casually the next morning as a mishap of a really good night out on the town (totally understandable from both parties), is the sober text.

You heard me - the sober text

This is a text that you send late at night when you're feeling in a weird mood or just plain lonely and are fully aware of what you are doing. Let me re-iterate...you are fully conscious of the fact that communicating with this person only brings you more trouble and yet you do it anyway. You can't even blame the embarrassing emotions that seem to fly out of your fingertips on anything but yourself.

You look crazy.

Remember that before you think sending that text might be a good idea.

Friday, August 6, 2010

What were you thinking?!

Do you ever have those moments where you look back on something you did and tense up, squeeze your eyes shut and basically start wincing - hoping to god that it wasn't as bad as you think it was?

You're thinking how is it actually possible that something so ridiculous could come out of your mouth? It's as if you have a little voice inside your head screaming at you to stop, but you just ignore it for some reason. The second the words leave your lips they hang in the air teasing you...drawing out the seconds before someone speaks again. Slow motion emotional distress - no better kind.

So do you think that people actually remember the stupid things you say? I'm really praying they don't. I am sitting here cringing thinking of my past really bad 'jessica simpson blonde' moments (sorry to all my blonde friends you know i love you) and the immature bs that slips out every now and again.

I believe I used the word 'sick' in front of my CEO the other day and not in the "I was feeling sick" kinda way. Smooth alex.

So moral of the story - I'm hoping that everyone has these moments as often as I do and the next time you walk around with food in your teeth all day, a see through skirt on by accident(that happened to me yesterday) or say something that makes you want to hit yourself about the head...remember we've all been there...

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Sugar Beach

Let me just say that as much as I can criticize and point fingers at the government for how they are spending our tax dollars here in Toronto - they have finally gotten something right.

The WATERFRONToronto project is probably one of the best things that could have happened to my life. Not only is it going to make heading down to queens quay that much more compelling, but it has strategically placed a beach right outside my office building. I'm talking right outside - I can see it from my desk (if only you knock down the two cubicle-like walls in front of me).

Sugar Beach. Close your eyes and I swear you'll feel like you're in another world...far, far away from the work piling up on your desk and the numbing hum of your office building.

This afternoon I kicked off my heels and ventured into the giant sand box with Jess - my new coworker slash soul mate? A wickedly cool girl that I would probably go insane without every day. Thank god someone gets my sarcasm and inappropriateness.

Back tracking - we collapsed into two white wooden perfect cottage esque beach chairs and spent our lunch hour underneath a pink umbrella. Um pretty much made my day.

Nothing makes stupidity and heart break slip your mind more than a little taste of sugar. Seriously.

Jaded

Jad·ed   /ˈdʒeɪdɪd/ –adjective
1. dulled or satiated by overindulgence: a jaded appetite.
2. worn out or wearied, as by overwork or overuse.
3. dissipated: a jaded reprobate.

The end result of having a steady flow of negative experiences, disappointment, and unfulfillment fed into a person where they get to the point where their anger circuits just sort of burn out and they accept disillusionment.

You've got your mama's style but you're yesterday's child to me
So Jaded
You think that's where it's at but is that where it's supposed to be?
You're gettin' it all over me
X-rated

In all it's misery it will always be what I love and hated
And maybe take a ride to the other side we're thinkin' of
We'll slip into the velvet glove
And be Jaded

Yeah, I'm so Jaded
And baby I'm afraid of you

You're thinkin' so complicated
I've had it all up to here
But it's so overrated
Love and hate it
Wouldn't trade it
Love Me Jaded

When everything you see is a blur
And ecstasy's what you prefer
You're so Jaded

'Cause I'm the one that Jaded you

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Question of the Day

I was having some fun on google digging up questions for a team building session I'm holding next week (not during office hours I swear) and came across one I had never seen before. It's one of those questions that really gets you thinking...I mean I'm writing a blog about it so it must've had some sort of impression on me...
If i gathered the closest people to you in your life, what would they say about you that's not true?


I was expecting the typical - how would they describe you? That's always an easy one - it's what you think of yourself that you hope others would say too...in my mind at least. I guess that's cheating a bit, but is it really? If you think of yourself as outgoing 9 times out of 10 most people agree and would add that you're social, loud, fun, etc. etc. It's a no brainer.

But this one is different - this one is real. This is when you think of all those times you feel misrepresented or thrown into some stereotype because of the clothes you wear or the music you listen to, even the job you have. Those little digs that your friends and family seem to throw at you that you never really say anything about.

You can probably tell that this question really got to me because I feel like most of the time people think they have me pegged and they actually have no idea who I am. Kinda funny actually.

So my answer to this question?

I would definitely say that the closest people in my life think that I'm a lot colder than I am. I don't know if that makes any sense, but they think that I'm almost invincible in the way I hold myself and interact with people. Someone very close to me once told me I was too serious. Just relax he said. To anyone else that wouldn't seem like an insult, but it was to me. It hurts to think that all they see when they think of me is how hard I work and the crazy amounts of time I dedicate to things in my life. Given, I am a 30 year old in a 23 year olds body, I am the biggest goofball ever. My guard isn't as high as everyone seems to think it is. Yes, I am a more serious person when it comes to my future, but I am not invincible. I have insecurities and fears just like everyone else and am waiting for someone to come along to take that wall down for good.

What would they say about you that's not true?

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Shorts ARE allowed to be shorter


After careful consideration and a heated debate with my mother, I've come to the conclusion that if a girl is wearing shorts they are allowed to be shorter than a skirt. However, let's put it in a little perspective. Whether it's a skirt or shorts, no item of clothing should ever show any part of you know what.

Please to all the girls out there - clothes are meant to cover your body. I appreciate a good plunging neckline and short skirt every now and then, but believe me I have never had a Britney moment and am hoping I never will. Yes you all know what I'm talking about.

So next time you're debating about the length of a particular item in your closet make sure you can sit in it without having some sort of paparazzi nightmare and be able to pick up something gracefully that has fallen out of your purse (because at a certain point in the evening you know you're going to drop your keys, lip gloss, phone or all of the above).

Don't get me started on the tightness though...that's a whole other ball game ladies. Exercise some caution with the wardrobe choices this august...somewhere somehow there is a mom thanking me for this :)



ti amo mama
xo

Attention All Guys



If you find yourself in a situation where you need to or hopefully just want to impress a girl I can help you out. It was actually a coincidence how I stumbled upon this place, but regardless I felt the need to share it with all of you.

Last night I was hanging around my condo with my roommate Niki and couldn't stand staying inside when it was such a gorgeous night. A patio seemed so boring and our balcony isn't as amusing as it was 2 years ago when we moved in. So the only logical thing to do was get in the car and do some city exploring.

With the windows down and the music blaring we made a quick decision to head west on Lakeshore and fly by the CNE and BMO. I haven't been to the beach down there in forever so we parked in the furthest lot before the stretch of condos started and hopped out.

Just to make this clear, I have lived in Toronto my whole life and have never walked as west as we did (sad I know). Over the white bridge we watched the sunset and smiled at the couple taking professional engagement photos overlooking the pink skyline. It was kinda perfect. Too bad I was on a date with my roommate (no offense Niki).

We kept walking and came across a long stretch of rocks that curved into the lake. With our wine and snacks in hand (yes we made a picnic) we climbed out and found a quiet spot on one of the rocks. Sitting there we could see the entire downtown Toronto skyline glistening at us and couldn't stop smiling.

So moral of the story - if you want to do something to make a girl feel like she's the most special thing in the world...Niki and I decided that take her here with some wine glasses and whatever happens she'll probably never forget it.

Cheers :)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

2 Years to London 2012



I still can't believe yesterday marked the 2 year countdown to the London Olympics. It feels like everyone is still reeling from Vancouver...literally. The pure adrenaline that I was running on the entire time threw my body into shock when I got back to the East coast. Don't get me wrong, it was totally worth it. I wouldn't trade the days without sleep and deliciously fatty foods for anything...not to mention screaming at the top of my lungs day in and day out either.

Everything about Vancouver was unbelievable. I have never seen so much Canadian pride. The streets were littered with Canada gear and there was something in the air. For the first time I could enjoy a huge sporting event, without the stress of actually having some sort of responsibility. Wait - I can go to that concert, only get 4 hours of sleep and still have time to grab that hockey ticket for tomorrow? You mean I don't have to dedicate 4-6 hours of my day to the gym and miss all the other events going on?

I could get used to this.

Not being an athlete anymore has its perks, but with London fast approaching I'm not sure how I feel about it. It's the next Summer Olympics and Beijing is becoming a distant memory for some. As our athletes look ahead, setting their sights on that podium in London, we all move on with them. It dawned on me that I am going to be just another Rhythmic Gymnastics spectator, cheering on the girls that gave it their all to grab that Olympic berth. My generation, my time in the sport is over and you know what - I'm ok with that. Maybe a year ago I wasn't in this place, but I've become a different person then I ever could be if I was still training. I'll never forget the incredible moments I had as a Canadian athlete, but I couldn't go back there now.

I stood at a press conference at the Canadian Athletes Now Fund yesterday afternoon downtown Toronto and was so proud of my former teammates. They came from all different sports, but all have the same thing in common. They are sacrificing it all for a shot in London. Let's do everything we can to support them.

Please check out www.canadianathletesnow.ca/ and make a difference in the life of an athlete. They need all of us behind them now in the home stretch to the Games.

Go Canada!

Moving Nightmare...


Ever since I heard that Toronto was throwing themselves into the ring to bid for the 2015 Pan/Parapan American Games I have wanted to get involved. Being in the right place at the right time I stepped into the Bid Office two years ago. The space became home to the Bid family - a quaint little office in the St. Lawrence Market took on a whole new identity.

By now you should all know that we WON the bid and have now successfully transitioned into the Toronto 2015 Host Corporation. This is where we ran into a little bit of a problem. Our little home is just too little. So long story short...after months of negotiating we are all packing up and heading down to our new building after the long weekend.

Unfortunately, what that means for all of us trying to work this week is that we're stuck in the middle of a moving nightmare. Everything is being packed away in boxes, there are no supplies left for anything (internet is going down in about an hour) and there are people on ladders kicking us off our stations to take down artwork and flags hanging from the ceiling. Did I mention the noise level? Not cool.

You can probably tell I'm not impressed and am seriously counting down the minutes until we're in our new spot. Waking up on the wrong side of the bed this morning really doesn't help either.

Will send pics of the new digs asap...get me outta here :)

A

$40 MILLION ON NATHAN PHILLIPS?

Toronto has a spending problem. You know it, I know it. Even our mayoral candidates know it.

“Toronto doesn’t have a funding problem. It does have a spending problem”
- George Smitherman

“Toronto has a spending problem, not a revenue problem”- Rob Ford

It seems as if Smitherman and Ford have been drinking the same kool-aid.

The biggest challenge for our new Mayor is definitly going to be handling that beautiful budget of ours, but that’s a given. How they are going to do it is actually what we should all be worried about.

Ironically enough, today an article on some improvements to Nathan Phillips Square caught my eye. I took a closer look and what I thought was just a minor enhancement turned out to be everything but. Can someone please explain to me why we are spending $40 million dollars to give Nathan Phillips a face lift?

Alright, so it’s not the most modern or technologically impressive of places, but it’s not supposed to be either. Apparently the upgrades are going to make it a more inviting place. Well, I walk through it every day and the last thing I’m thinking is that it’s empty and cold.

Once the cold Toronto winter passes, the place is packed. It’s full of tourists taking a break from walking under the sun, kids running around playing and even couples enjoying a quiet romantic moment near the water.

There’s beauty in simplicity sometimes.

How will building yet another restaurant (that we don’t need) and creating a fancier landscape really benefit Torontonians? This multi-million dollar project is coming right out of the city’s capital budget too. Just what we need.

But hey – I’m all for an information and tourist Kiosk on Queen Street.

Let’s hope our new mayor can put this city’s money to good use because this sure isn’t a good way to start.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Your City, My City


The Star has asked 30 members of the community to blog about what they think should be done to make Toronto a more livable city. What kind of city do we want to live in - and how should we get there? To start a dialogue, we've asked dozens of people from across the region to offer ideas on how to make our community more livable, more successful and more just. They are posting suggestions on the Your City, My City blog, but we also want to hear from you. So sign on to thestar.blogs.com/yourcitymycity and join the debate to help shape where we live.

I have been a part of this incredible project and just posted my second blog up on the site today. CHECK IT OUT and CONTRIBUTE!

What do you think would make Toronto a better city?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Olympic Fever

I have been in Vancouver for literally three days and I haven't had a moment to stop for one minute...so here's a point form blog for you all to enjoy because I have 2 minutes before my volunteering shift starts...here we go

I have been running on...

- NO SLEEP
- Incredible LIVE Music (Concerts are EVERY night!)
- Meeting the World's best athletes
- Watching Jennifer win our first Silver Medal!!!! (teared up just a little bit)
- Molson Hockey House (enough said)
- Introducing the Minister of Tourism and Culture at Ontario House
- CanFUND House with Jane Roos :)
- Rain, rain and more rain (aka my hair is so curly its insane)
- So much red and white clothing we all look sooo patriotic i LOVE it
- Volunteering at Canada Olympic House with the best crew ever...team song soon?

Alright got to jet...having the time of my life!

Be back soon (hopefully)
xo

Thursday, February 11, 2010

VANCOUVER

I didn't know what to expect flying out to an Olympics as Beijing starts to fade from people's memories. I was so excited that we were hosting the Games and bringing the world to this incredible city, but had to really come to terms with the fact that I was coming as a volunteer and spectator! Definitely a weird feeling, but the second I got here it has been unbelievable. The streets are lined with people in red and white, there are so many languages being spoken around me I find myself answering people in french or spanish and the Olympic spirit has definitely arrived.

Today I sat on the bus coming into downtown for my orientation meeting at Canada Olympic House and had a little girl plop down next to me. She was hard to miss. In a bright turquoise jacket, red Canada hat and big Canada purse, she was quite a sight. What caught my eye first out of everything was the lanyard around her neck covered in pins! For those of you who don't know this, athletes trade pins at every big Games with other countries and try and collect as many as they can. It sounds kind of weird, but my pins from the Olympics will be something I cherish forever.

It made me so happy to see her with all of them that I had to ask her about them. She proudly chatted my ear off for the next 20 minutes explaining where she got each one of them and why some were her favorites. She was so excited to be at the Olympics (also a Toronto native) and thought this was the biggest adventure of her life. I will remember that forever. Come to think of it, it's one of the biggest adventures of my life. My first Olympics in my country, working for the Canadian Olympic Committee, writing for CBC and soaking in this incredible feeling. It doesn't get any better than this.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

WRITING FOR CBC SPORTS

Hey Everyone!

Check out my articles on www.cbc.ca/olympics! I will be writing through the 2010 Games on my experiences out West and would love for you all to follow them :)

GO CANADA!

http://www.cbc.ca/olympics/blogs/alexandraorlando/2010/02/pressure-and-the-canadian-athlete.html

http://www.cbc.ca/olympics/blogs/alexandraorlando/2010/01/the-icing-on-the-cake.html

Friday, February 5, 2010

Why is it so hard to get a City Councillor on the phone?

Next Tuesday there is a North York Community Council meeting being held, where Havergal College will be making a deputation against the proposed billboard variance by Abcom Media. If you're wondering how I'm even involved with this, I used to be a Havergal girl once upon a time and now find myself back in the halls as an Institute Program Coordinator. This issue first came up a year ago, where a letter of protest from our Principal Dr. Susan R. Groesbeck with a petition of now over 800 signatures was sent out to Mayor David Miller and Councillor Karen Stintz for our ward, including others. With no response, it seems as if our beloved politicians are trying to slip something past the public yet again, but is that really a surprise?

The new billboard or just a replacement sign as it is being referred to, will be a brand new carbon consuming, bright eyesore to the quiet neighborhood of Avenue and Lawrence. Very noticeable from Havergal grounds, but also across the street from a set of condominiums. As quiet as this matter has been kept, there are probably a number of people that will have a shining sign beaming down on their homes 24/7 that don't even know it. Although Councillor Stintz does reassure us that it will not be a flashing video sign, they tried to pull that one in California a year ago too, I'm not buying it. It's only a matter of time before a new bylaw comes into action and just an improved sign becomes a gimmicky, consumer driven distraction. Not to mention the environmental concerns that this poses on our community. The carbon consumption alone is enough to power 13 homes. So long story short, the detriment to our community is far greater than the benefits (what are those again?).

Before we head into the meeting next week, I spent all afternoon calling each City Councillor that would be in attendance. I can't help but laugh when I recall the curt rejections from their secretaries or the empty promises of a call back. The one and only Councillor that was willing to take my call was none other than Karen Stintz, the very person Havergal has not heard back from since they first contacted her last May. Once I made it clear that I was calling on behalf of the Institute, she didn't seem pleased I had kept that little fact from her secretary. I felt as though once I finally had her attention, I was being rushed off the phone. She didn't understand where Havergal was coming from (maybe that's why she never responded), but she definitely does now. Did I mention that City Staff recommended against this proposal and somehow it's still getting pushed through?

GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY

Sprott Supports Canadian Elite Athletes

Canadian Investment firm to celebrate each victory in Vancouver with $100,000 donation each time a Canadian athlete wins gold

Toronto, February 4, 2010 – Sprott Asset Management LP knows a thing or two about gold. And today CEO Eric Sprott announced support for Canadian athletes with a unique pledge, the Sprott Canadian Gold Metal Celebration. Each time a gold medal is won in Vancouver, Sprott Asset Management LP, in conjunction with The Sprott Foundation will donate $100,000 to the Canadian Athletes Now Fund (CAN Fund), a not-for-profit organization devoted solely to raising funds and awareness of Canadian athletes.

“With our Canadian athletes competing for gold against the best in the world, we wanted to celebrate their success in achieving their goals by supporting the CAN Fund, which provides direct funding to Canadian athletes,” said Eric Sprott, CEO, Sprott Asset Management LP. “As an investment firm, we’ve delivered results to our clients by making big bets on the future —and we wanted to use the same approach to build on our athletes’ successes in Vancouver by providing funding for our athletes on a longer term basis.”

Sprott says he chose to partner with CAN Fund for its track record in being the leader in direct funding for Canadian athletes, many of whom struggle to meet even basic training expenses, let alone the international travel required to compete at world-class levels. Donations are allocated by athletes for equipment, coaching, travel, team fees, proper nutrition and living expenses as they train out of the spotlight to become world class athletes.

“Today Eric Sprott reminds all Canadians to celebrate excellence and the necessity of providing ongoing direct funding to our athletes,” says Jane Roos, the founder of CAN Fund. “For years the CAN Fund has been building the relationship between our summer and winter athletes encouraging them to work together. In one week, many of our winter athletes will realize their dream of standing on the podium. Sprott’s generosity helps ensure our winter athletes’ success will fuel the dreams of summer athletes in the future.”

Roos said that an initial gesture of support by Sprott—a $210,000 donation to CAN Fund through the Sprott Foundation—has effectively cleared the backlog of winter athlete funding requests.

“Funding has increased for athletes competing in Vancouver, but what many Canadians probably don’t know is that 42 per cent of our winter athletes who are ranked in the global top ten still have net negative incomes,” says Ben Rutledge, 2008 Olympic Gold Medalist in Rowing.

The Sprott Canadian Gold Metal Celebration will feature a website www.sprottgoldpledge.com—set up to encourage others in Corporate Canada to join in celebrating each hard fought success of Canadian athletes in February. Sprott says this is a critical time to celebrate victory since an athlete has never won a gold medal on Canadian soil during the Olympics in Montreal (1976) and Calgary (1988).

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

VolWeb.ca Newsletter February 2010 - Featuring AthletesCAN!

Winter Games Countdown

Only 12 more days until the start of the 2010 Winter Games! Whether you are volunteering at a community celebration, going to a competition venue or enjoying the various events and pavilions around the city, we hope everyone has a great time during the Games.

As we welcome the world to British Columbia , we also want to celebrate the commitment and dedication of Games-time volunteers. Numerous volunteers were recruited through VolWeb.ca for celebration events across the Province.

During the 2010 Winter Games, VolWeb.ca staff will be temporarily assigned to roles outside of 2010 Legacies Now through Feb. 26, 2010, and support will be limited during this time. Please contact us with any non-urgent business after Feb. 26. For urgent support requests, email volwebsupport@2010legaciesnow.com.

AthletesCAN – FEATURED ORGANIZATION



AthletesCAN, the association of Canada ’s national team athletes, was started in 1992 by a group of retired Canadian athletes with a goal of creating an independent voice for athletes across Canada .

AthletesCAN started working with VolWeb.ca to find volunteers and Ashley Kilburn, Manager of Athlete Relations & Strategic Partnerships, says, "It was great – I was able to narrow down my search to find those who had the experience we were looking for to ensure our event was successful."

Throughout these events, one volunteer stood out in Ashley’s mind: VolWeb.ca volunteer Bill D. "Not only did he have an amazing resume of volunteer experience in sports but he knew how to run an event and he was able to give us pointers!" Ashley explains, "He was there almost every day we were, did not hesitate to take on any task and was incredibly pro-active – he definitely made our lives easier and we would not have been able to do it without him!"

VolWeb.ca would like to recognize AthletesCAN for supporting our Canadian athletes and making such a great contribution to the community!

Monday, February 1, 2010

The Adelaide Club

HELP THEM SUPPORT US



By Joining the Adelaide Club you will help support Canadian National Team Athletes through the CAN FUND! This incredible charity started by Jane Roos, one of the most influential women in Canadian sport, gives athletes struggling to train and compete for this country the means to keep going. There are still about 60 Canadians who will represent us in the Vancouver 2010 Games that do not have any government funding. They have found a way to qualify for the Olympics with the help of their family, friends and people like Jane Roos. Find out more about the CAN Fund at www.canadianathletesnow.com and see how you can contribute!

On behalf of all Canadian athletes, I can't thank the Adelaide Club and the Can Fund enough for everything they have done for us.

GO CANADA!

http://www.adelaideclub.com/

Sunday, January 24, 2010

My current Obsession...


There is just something about Justin Nozuka's voice that puts me in the most refreshing state of mind. The one and only Leigh Kitlar took me to his concert here in Toronto a little while back at the Mod Club and he is even more hypnotizing in person. Right now his music is my obsession and GOLDEN TRAIN continues to be on replay on my ipod...

But tomorrow if a golden train came to take you away,
Would you go or would you stay

Friday, January 22, 2010

RIGHT TO PLAY @ Lawrence Park

This past year as an Athlete Ambassador for Right to Play I have had the opportunity to learn so much about this incredible humanitarian organization. I always thought I knew what Right to Play did, but I quickly realized it was so much more than I thought. After working with the incredible Team here in Toronto I'm still in awe.

Right to Play is currently reaching over 680,000 children each and every week through sport and play programs across Africa, Asia, The Middle East and South America. By using games and sport as tools for education, peace and conflict resolution, community development and disease prevention, Right to Play is making a huge difference in the lives of children worldwide.

Children who are marginalized based on gender, ethnicity, social background and religion. Children who live in some of the most disadvantaged areas in the world, heavily affected by war, disease and poverty. Children who feel guilty about having fun.

Right to Play gives them back their childhood. Our international volunteers coach and train local leaders and role models to run sport and play activities that can be sustained within the community. Using sport to make it a healthier and safer world for the next generation.

This morning I went to my first school visit on behalf of Right to Play in North York, right around where I grew up. It was a blast. The student athlete board is organizing a whole week of fundraising activities for Right to Play and we kicked it off with our assembly. Running some of the games that we use in the field with hundreds of high school students was the best part. At first they didn't seem too impressed that they had to participate, but by the end of it EVERY single person was smiling. It's incredible to see how the simplest games and activities can teach so much. Ranging from teamwork, multi-tasking to disease prevention and even creating an open, comfortable space to tackle serious issues in communities.

Text PLAY to 45678 to donate $5 to RIGHT TO PLAY Now

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Haiti

I was running late for work today and flung myself on to the nearest seat I could find on the Northbound train. Vacant for only a few seconds, the seat beside me had today's Metro newspaper crumpled up on it. I don't usually grab it because I use my precious time on the subway to close my eyes and fall semi-asleep, but the front page caught my attention. The crisis in Haiti heightened with the terror and horror of a devastating after shock. My stomach dropped and as I slowly read the articles that exposed the dirty underbelly of the political instability, severe lack of medical attention, food and water my throat dried up. I suddenly found myself hit with symptoms reminiscent of claustrophobia. I closed my eyes and felt my head spin and chest tighten. A few deep breaths and the kind smile of the woman sitting across from me eased what could have escalated into a messy situation. I practically ran off the subway to get some fresh air and sat down on the nearest bench. Haiti. The image of the young boy pouring water from a broken pipe line into his mouth was burned into my memory. What was I doing to help? What could I do to help? I donated money to the Red Cross earlier this week, but that doesn't seem like enough at all. So I urge you all to help in whatever way you can, whether it's your money or your time, if everyone comes together we can do our part to give the people of Haiti a fighting chance to survive.

I was forwarded the message below this morning. It only takes two minutes of your time to sign the petition...

"The work ahead to recover from this tragedy is immense. So here's our goal: $1 billion for Haiti. That's how much Haiti owes to the International Monetary Fund, the Inter-American Development Bank, and a handful of others.

Sign the petition below to ask Haiti's creditors to act quickly and cancel Haiti's debts:

http://one.org/international/actnow/haiti/index.html?rc=haiticonfemail

As Haiti begins to rebuild we can help by lifting this debt."

My thoughts and prayers go out to everyone in Haiti right now.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Big 2-3

I woke up this morning with the biggest smile on my face. I'm not usually a huge birthday person and don't really care too much for the whole big she-bang, but I actually may have had a change of heart. What triggered this excitedness? I really couldn't tell you. All I know is that I was actually genuinely looking forward to being 23. Last year I had blown out my knee and was a miserable, grumpy birthday girl on crutches. I pretty much would've completely missed celebrating my 22nd year on this earth if it wasn't for my very good girl friends making sure that even though I was in a completely b@$%*y mood I still had to do something. When I look back on it, it was probably the most bizarre evening and led to an even more bizarre year. There were some definite highlights and incredible moments, but there were definitely some times where I couldn't wait for the year to be over too. Career-wise it was more than I ever thought it could be, relationship-wise let's just say I learned a lot (or finally got some sense knocked in to me...my friends can all breathe a sigh of relief), family-wise we've never been closer, but friend-wise there were a lot of growing a part realizations. All in all, I was on a constant roller coaster ride not exactly balancing everything the way I have been known to in the past. SO after the new year, along with some very demanding resolutions, I felt like things were different. I was dreading turning 23 a few months ago, but today I couldn't be happier. As I move further away from my young adulthood and into grown up life, I have to just smile. I've come so far in such a short amount of time and am a healthier and better person because of it. So thank you for all the birthday wishes, I know that I can achieve anything with having so much love around me. I will never miss another birthday again :)

Friday, January 1, 2010

2010

Happy New Year Everybody!!! I still can't believe it's 2010...kinda freaks me out a bit....but I was so ready for 2009 to be over. As fast as it flew by the last couple of months have probably been the most stressful of my entire life and just seemed to never end. I can't even believe that I made it through as unscathed as I did. I mean here I am, healthy and happy, surrounded by great family and friends...can't really ask for too much more than that.

A few weeks ago I fell into this pessimistic mindset (somewhere my mom is smiling right now...she is the ultimate optimist) and couldn't get myself out of it. I fully brought it upon myself by taking on way too much than I actually have time for, drinking obscene amounts of coffee that no person should ever drink, sleeping less hours than I have class a day and working as much as I can in a million different areas. Welcome to my crazy life. So this kind of life plus exams, plus travelling for all the really amazing things I get to do as a retired athlete, plus trying to get back in 'athlete' shape....drove me absolutely insane. Ask my poor roommate, she never saw me.

Anyways, moral of the story I needed the holidays to slow everything down a bit and breathe for a change. It was just what I needed. So as I rung in the New Year last night I made a deal with myself. When I feel like life is starting to blur again...slow down...make time for those stupid little things that make you happy...call an old friend (oh that's new years resolutin #2 -> actually pick up my phone/respond to messages)...and learn to relax (without someone telling me to...you all know how much I love that).

Excited to see where this year takes me.

Laugh. Live. Love. 2010

Gymnastics Deja Vu


So weird to have apparatus back in my hands...weird good :)





Remember this life?