Thursday, May 31, 2012

It's Ok Thursday

Its Ok Thursdays


It's been  awhile since I've linked up with Neely over at A Complete Waste of Make-up.  And I'm beyond jealous that she is enroute to one of my favorite places in the whole world...NYC...right now!  So, without further adieu...It's Ok...

It's ok
To want answers

It's ok
To throw yourself a pity party every once in a while

It's okTo worry about how things are going to turn out

It's ok
To be super pumped to be wastin' away again in Margaritaville on Saturday!!

It's ok
To enjoy being the group gift buyer at work (I love shopping on someone elses dime)

It's ok
To miss Hawaii like no other

It's ok
To be way ahead of the game in planning stuff

It's ok
To hate dieting

It's ok
To love running with your husband (never thought I'd say the whole "running" thing)

It's ok
To be a little jealous sometimes

It's ok
To wish every week was only 4 days like the last 2 have been

It's ok
To be completely bored with work lately

It's ok
To wish you were a teacher this week

It's ok
To be ready for another vacation already

I hope you all enjoy the end of your week and I can't wait to update you on our family tradition...the Jimmy Buffett concert on Saturday! 

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Memorial Day Weekend

Wow!  What a busy weekend!  Greg & I hit the ground running after work on Friday with dinner with the whole family at my parents house.  

On Saturday, we started off by going to Greg's friend, Robert's, 30th birthday party.  Of course, I neglected to get any pictures, but it was a fun party!  His wife did a great job planning the perfect "luau" at a Midtown bar.  Unfortunately, we could not stay long, but we had other events on the agenda.   Our niece, Kate, had her 3rd birthday party!  It's so hard to believe she's already turning 3!  Seems like yesterday that she was born and now she is really growing up to be such a fun little lady!  Lucky girl is going to spend her actual birthday in Hawaii this week!

Me & Greg with the Birthday Girl







Sisters!! 

I love this picture of Claire and Kate!  I think I caught them having a special little "sisters" moment.  I know those two will treasure their relationship for years to come! 


On Sunday, our older niece, Claire had her dance recital.  She performed the perfect patriotic tap dance to "God Bless America".  What a great way to celebrate Memorial Day!  Claire has really improved over her years as a little dancer, and I just love to see the sparkle in her eyes when she is in her element!

Little Miss America

Me & My girl, Claire





Later that night, we rounded out the weekend activities with a somewhat impromptu block party to celebrate Memorial Day.  Greg fried up some wonderful fish, shrimp & hush puppies!  Not on the diet, but oh-so-good!!


As usual, we loved hanging with our neighbors and celebrating!  Monday was basically a recovery day...nothing planned but cleaning the house and running a few errands.  But more importantly, Greg & I made sure to reflect on the true meaning of Memorial Day and remembering the men and women who so selflessly gave their lives so that we can live in freedom.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Maui- Part 2

So, Thursday, after we spent some last minute hours on Wailea Beach, we headed over to Kaanapali Beach to the beautiful Hyatt Regency.  The hotel was gorgeous and had so much to look at...flamingos, penguins, swans, a fabulous atrium and many other birds on display.



The Hyatt was the location for the Valic Top Advisor Conference which is how we were so fortunate to come back to Maui!  I cannot say enough about the organizers of the events.  Everything was run so smoothly, the events were top notch, and I know everyone there was like us and and enjoyed it all.  Thursday evening started off with a "Welcome Reception" on the beach.  We were all treated to a beach cover-ups for the ladies and Hawaiian shirts for the men as our "favors", a traditional Hawaiian meal, yummy Mai Tais, and great entertainment!

Yes, I'm the goofy wife who made her "Top Advisor" pose by the conference sign.  But I was so proud of him :)




Me & Greg at the Welcome Luau     


Me & my beautiful ladies, Britney & Leigh

When we got back to our room that night, we found an awesome surprise!  As a conference gift, we were invited to come the next morning to pick our our very own Maui Jim sunglasses, which are made nearby in Lahaina.

 
The guys had general meetings both Friday & Saturday mornings, but we all still had plenty of time to spend in the Hawaiian sun!


Friday evening we were hosted by the Central region for a dinner at Longhi's in Lahaina.  The food was delish and we enjoyed hanging out and watching the sun set.  

The guys with the Vice President of their department

Saturday morning, the spouses were invited to join the general session to listen to the keynote speaker.  We were honored to hear Aron Ralston speak about his trials and experiences depicted in the movie "127 Hours".  Wow!  What an amazing experience for all of us!  His story is so moving and it was hard to choke back the tears as he shared what he learned about himself while he was stuck under that boulder.  We all learned so much about overcoming challenges in our lives from the experiences he shared.  Each employee was lucky enough to get an autographed copy of his memoir.

Photo credit
 


Saturday night, was the awards dinner for the Valic advisors.  It was fun to dress up in our fancies and get treated to a delicious steak dinner.  I told Greg that it felt like we were at the Golden Globes!  The awards were over-the-top with music and all sorts of fanfare.  It was a wonderful ending to an amazing week in paradise!  I am so grateful for all of Greg's hard work to get us to Maui and loved every minute of our vacation in Hawaii!




Ready for the Top Advisor Dinner & Awards Banquet






Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Maui- Part 1

Howdy everyone!  I know, I know, it's been a while, but guess what... I have been sunnin' like no other in Maui!  Greg worked so hard in 2011 and was awarded an incentive trip to Maui from his company (more on that in part 2). Since the trip was only planned for three nights, we chose to extend it three more nights and spend it on the other side of the island.  We chose the Grand Wailea Resort and we were not disappointed.  The grounds and beaches were absolutely stunning and they even had a cute little chapel right there on the property!  I begged to renew our vows, but the $1500 price tag was not in the vaca budget...haha!  We were also so lucky that two of our great couple friends also qualified for the trip.  It's always fun to travel with friends!

Here we are with Britney & Brandon and Cole & Leigh as we arrived at the Grand Wailea, greeted with a lei.


My first "boat drink" was a frozen mango mojito...yummy!


This trip, Greg & I opted to drive the famous Road to Hana on our first full day there.  Our last trip to Maui was so short that we couldn't afford to give up the amount of time it took to drive the road.  But this time, I am so glad we did!  We got up at 5:30, left the resort and hit the Road to Hana about 6:45.  If you don't know what the Road to Hana is, its a 52 mile stretch of highway connecting the town of Kaului to the remote village of Hana.  The road consists of approximately 620 curves (and I'm talking sharp curves!), 59 bridges (46 which are one-lane), and some of the most gorgeous views you have ever seen!  We enjoyed the day in the beautiful weather, driving with the convertible top down, listening to some of our favorite music!



We stopped at this road-side stand for some fresh banana bread and coconut "candy" and some interesting conversation with the owner.


Isn't this cliff gorgeous??  I just loved the look of it!

Greg & I with the north Maui coastline in the background.


We stopped off at a black sand beach and found this awesome cave that we could walk through.


Me on the black sand beach in sitting in the cave.


One of the many waterfalls along with drive.



That night, after enjoying some pool time and resting up from our drive, Greg & I went to a wonderful steakhouse at the Four Seasons.  Isn't the coloring of the sunset just fabulous in this picture!? 


The rest of this leg of the trip was full of a lot of beach time and relaxation.  Our waterproof camera just doesn't do the water justice in this picture.  It was beyond blue and crystal clear!


Our last night in Wailea, we went to dinner with Britney & Brandon at a gorgeous restaurant that overlooked a golf course.  We watched the sun set and enjoyed a great dinner!
Brandon & Greg

Me & Greg as the sun was setting

On Thursday, we packed up and said goodbye to the Grand Wailea and headed east to Kaanapali for the work conference part of the trip.  I'll spare you the picture overload and update on that leg of the trip in another posting.  Until part 2...

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Tuesday Randoms

Why hello, my little pretties!  Hope you are all having a good week!  Nothing too exciting to share around here, unless you want to hear about a trip to the Target pharmacy and the dry cleaners.  Yeah, didn't think so :-)  We had a pretty low key weekend of running earrands, shopping, and general Maui prep work.  I loved every second of it!  So, here's a few random pictures/ thoughts from the past couple of weeks...

While at HEB last week, I came across this wine.  How fun is this name??  In case you don't know, we live on the absolute BEST cul-de-sac in the world, and drinking wine is one of my favorite pasttimes with my neighbors.  I'm thinking we may need to start buying this by the case!


One thing we did manage to do over the weekend was sit out on our back porch and enjoy one of our last non-heat stroke weekends.  Greg had the perfect idea to boil a small pot of shrimp.  Yumm-o!


Yes, it looks like a pot of corn & sausage, but below is proof that we did have some skrimps too!



Last weekend. we ended up going by the outlet mall in Round Rock.  Greg & I both bought a pair of new running shoes.  Yes, they are amazingly bright, but I'm loving them!  You can bet that I won't be getting hit by a car anytime soon.  And they feel pretty fabulous on my feetsies when I run.  Speaking of running...I think I may finally have a running buddy in Greg.  We're on the final stretch for "get into bathing suit shape", so he and I have been putting in about 4 miles an evening.  I tend to lag behind him about 20 paces, but it's okay.  We both keep our headsets on and focus on the task at hand.  I think we're going to try to run a 5K together after Maui. 




So, the rest of my week will be spent packing, tying up loose ends at work, and making sure the world won't end while I'm on vacation...I kid, I kid!  Hope you guys enjoy the rest of yours.  I can't wait to share our vacation photos with you soon!  Toodles!


Wednesday, May 2, 2012

What I'm Lovin' Wednesday

Happy Hump Day everyone!!  I'm so excited to see the light at the end of the tunnel before the big vacation!  I think I'm going start packing this weekend...woo hoo!!  This week has been crazy busy!  I've had to leave work early twice so far, but the workload has grown exponetially, so that mean, up by 4 and in by 6am...OUCH!  I would say it should be smooth sailing until Friday, but that tends to bite me in the rear.

So, withour further adieu, I bring you What I'm Lovin' Wednesday with Jamie!

This week, I"m lovin' that mine and my hubby's colleges played each other in baseball last night and we won!  Although we always support each others colleges in sports, that all goes out the window when they play each other (not very often).  I'm loving that we were invited to an alumni pre-party before the game, and I'm lovin' that we met some other fun Bearkat/ Aggie couples enjoying the game as well.

Here's few fun pictures from our outting at the ball park.







I'm loving that I received great news (within minutes of each other), that two amazing people will hopefully soon be closer to me!  Good vibes and prayers going out to them!

I'm loving that we have a low-key weekend ahead of us.  Staying home and packing for Hawaii!

And to top it off, I'm loving that I only have 7 more work days until I am headed to Maui with my great hubby who worked so hard to qualify for this trip.  I'm loving that we get to go with 2 of our favorite couples!  I'm loving that we get to veg out on a gorgeous beach for 6 full days!! 

 I'M LOVIN' PARADISE!!!


via

On a more serious note, I ask that you say a quick prayer for Greg's college friend, Justin, and his sweet wife and kids.  This past Saturday, he fell out during a 10K race and was in a medically induced coma over the weekend.  Although he's made improvements this week, they are still running lots of tests to determine what caused it.  He is so young and such a great father and husband.  We pray that they can diagnose what caused this and get him quickly healed and home to his family.


Simply Smith

The Mr. & Mrs.

Rhett

Miss Prissy

Vegas
 
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