Wednesday, November 21, 2012


So, it's that time of year again when the things people are thankful for come to the forefront of their mind. It's things we're thankful for all year long, but because there is a holiday called THANKSgiving, we tend to actually realize those things for which we are grateful. I chose not to post everyday on Facebook about my list and rather chose to have a little narrative about it all.  Surprised? I didn't think so :)

I am so blessed to have so many things in my life for which I can be thankful. My family is number one. That includes my husband, whom I adore and am eternally blessed to have in my life. A man who loves me no matter what, whose smile and laughter makes my heart melt and whom without, I know  I wouldn't  be who I am. My family also includes my amazing parents who raised me to see the good in everything, to be faithful, loving and trustworthy. My brothers who I have always looked up to and admired. I am always proud to tell people that I have two big brothers. I think it's the best way to grow up, the best family dynamic, the best of everything. I know that it's all I know, but I truly believe being the baby girl with two big brothers who care about me, watch over me and believe in me is the greatest thing ever:) My cousins and aunts and uncles on both the Green and Ahlers side make me so happy. I love that no matter where we are in life, the distance between us or the amount of time that passes that we might not talk, my cousins were my first friends and I find it really cool to have that bond start from such a young age and grow with us as we all grow. I am so lucky to have my Doenges and Palmer family. I married into  some greatness there:)

Another part of our growing family includes my nieces and nephews. I am a lucky aunt to have gained three of those from the Palmer family as well:) Ainsley and Freddie make my life whole. Just the thought of them brings a smile to my face. I seriously sit around sometimes and just think about them and find myself grinning like a fool. So, thank you Clifton and Jaime for that:)

While mentioning family, I will go straight into how thankful I am for my friends. God has blessed me abundantly in this area. I have my number one, my other half, the Hollz to my Keek. I don't remember life without her and I am so so lucky that no matter what, we're us. It's amazing how distance doesn't matter.  It's not always fun being so far apart, but multiple daily phone calls and texts keep us who we are. I also have my Seven. Talk about friendship! Three of whom I have known for almost my entire life, and others we picked up along the way. People grow up, grow apart, go their separate ways. We can't seem to get rid of each other. And we like it that way:) Then there's my CT best friends who I waited a long time for. It felt like when I first moved here that everyone I met grew up here an had their own group of friends and while I made some nice acquaintances, I never really fit in anywhere.  Then Oliver and I went to a wedding for a friend of his and I met his friends girlfriend, Krystie. When we got back from that wedding, we started hanging out and became great friends. Then, Krystie introduced me to Jess, another cop wife. The three of us have so much fun together and I couldn't ask for better girlfriends!

Next, I am thankful for a mish-mosh of things; like my job. While it's not always easy working with a staff made up entirely of women, I am thankful for the women I work for and work with. And on the subject of work, I am extremely thankful that I love my job. Teaching is the most rewarding thing I can do with my life. I love my students, even when they make me crazy. Because even as one is running around the classroom making me want to pull my hair out, a moment later we are sitting in a circle and they tell me they are thankful for me because I am their favorite teacher and they love me. Does it get better than that? I don't think so.

I am thankful for nature. All of it. Especially during this season. I love the Fall. I frequently find myself thanking God for the beauty He put on this earth. Everything from sunrises and sunsets, to any and every body of water that glistens in the sun, the vivid colors of the leaves and the beautiful blue skies and puffy clouds.

I am thankful for Zeta Tau Alpha. The joy this organization has brought to my life is unbelievable. From all of my Longwood Zeta's, my pledge sisters, my perfect family and all of the traditions that being a Zeta from Farmville entails. Then, I was lucky enough to have a chapter open in CT that brings me so much pride. The ladies of the Lambda Alpha chapter of ZTA make my heart swell with  pride when I see them volunteering, raising money and awareness for breast cancer and even just   watching them grow throughout their college years.

I thank God everyday for these things, but sharing them with the world (or the three people who read
this blog;) feels nice too. And none of these things would even be possible without God, so to say I'm thankful for my faith wouldn't even begin to describe it. So there you have it, my 2012 thankful post. I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with family, friends, laughter and smiles.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Birthday Snob

So...I blame it on my parents. I am a birthday snob. I love birthdays (everyone's!) but especially mine. It is a special day where everyone celebrates YOU! One day out of the year that your family, friends, loved ones, celebrate your life and the fact that you are in their life.

I say I blame it on good 'ole Kip and denise because they showered me and my brothers with birthday love and sentiments and gifts and everything every year! I was a princess for a day (family-hold your tongue with the spoiled comments that it wasn't just for ONE day;) I was the baby and the only girl, so deal with it:)

Every year we would wake up to the White family Happy Birthday banner draped across the wall in the kitchen. We would have birthday pancakes with a candle. I had a birthday button I would wear on my shirt. Birthday cards and presents were set out on the table. Sometimes we could open one in the morning but have to wait for the rest for after school. Side note-if I even went to school! My birthday is on Veteran's Day which is a government holiday. We still had school, but my daddy didn't have to work, so sometimes he would pick me up from school early:) Which led me to truly believe no one should work on their birthday. When I got to college and saw on a syllabus on the first day of class that there was an exam scheduled on November 11th, I told the professor I would need to take that exam early because I wouldn't be in class that day. True story.

I don't have to worry about that up here in CT where we have every holiday known to man off from school. Don't think that the true meaning of Veteran's Day is lost on me either though. I am honored to share my birthday with such a praiseworthy holiday. I appreciate all that veterans have done for our country and I love that I can share that day of celebrations.

But, back to bday celebrations. Our family is also known for the all day birthday phone calls. All day long I would get calls from aunts, uncles and grandparents singing to me. That continues to this day. And I love it. Any birthday cards that would come in the mail early were opened and displayed somewhere in the house for pretty much the whole month, if not just for the days leading up to the actual birthday. I start getting excited about my birthday in like mid-October, but the real anticipation begins right after Halloween. It's like I have the distraction of Halloween and then bam! It's November 1st. On my sixteenth birthday, I got a present everyday for all sixteen days leading up to November 11th. My mom worked at my school and had things delivered to me in class even! One day I received a huge bouquet of balloons in my Spanish class and walked down the hall carrying a big bunch of mylar balloons the rest of the day. Obnoxious? Sorry. I loved it.

When I got to college, I'd receive care packages and cards but I was worried it wouldn't be the same. Enter Hollee Higbea. She knew how I was about birthdays and not only did she get it, she made an actual happy birthday banner to hang across my dorm room door for when I woke up that first November away from home. There were handmade posters and signs hanging on my door and it melted my heart. The next four years of college birthdays were pretty amazing (cubes, blueberry madness, frank:) Including a HUGE surprise visit from not one, but BOTH of my brothers on my 21st! One from CT and one (and his then girlfriend, my now sister-in-law) from NC. It was amazing. It is difficult to surprise me, but they pulled it off and I FREAKED.

When I moved to CT, again I worried my birthday's might not be the same so far from home. Hollee has made it to every birthday since I've lived here and this is the first year she wont be able to. --I don't wanna talk about it.--
Even my M7 has made the trek to celebrate with me. Thanks to Mrs. DeSimone's minivan:) We went into NYC one year and got super crazy, stayed out til 5 am and had an awesome time cramming seven girls into one hotel room.

Last year was the year I had waited for my whole life. 11/11/11. I seriously started planning the celebration when I was nine. The girls all came up, and we did a bar crawl through SoNo and had a blast.

I've been so lucky that most people have the holiday off from work and can travel to be with me. I am so blessed to have such amazing friends who celebrate me on my favorite day of the year. This is the first year my VA friends aren't coming. I am a little bummed, but I completely understand, life happens, and I don't ever get to take off from school to go down there for their birthday's, so I get it. Doesn't mean I like it though! This is also the first year that I don't have anything planned to celebrate. There have been a few things in the works, but plans have changed and changed again and the pieces don't seem to be fitting into place to make a big fun thing happen.

Am I getting too old to be so excited about birthdays? No, sorry, I can't believe that. Like I said, I love birthdays. Always will. I love other peoples birthdays too, maybe because it's just instilled in me to get excited for others to have a day all to themselves! When it's a student's birthday at school, they get a crown and stickers and special privileges all day! When it's a family member's birthday I call them like 26741 times throughout the day. I will always be a child at heart when it comes to November 11th. I even wanna go play laser tag...I'm just having a hard time finding a place for adults! Maybe that should be my next business venture:)