Saturday, August 20, 2011

Packing for college

I won't waste time bemusing the time gone by since my last post. Obviously, life is busy and priorities haven't included 'blogging'. But I find myself with a laptop, some free time and a dire need to wax poetic today.

Alexa is 13 days away from moving to college. I don't know for sure who is more nervous as the day approaches, her or me? It's so difficult to tell since she gets quieter and I get more "organizational" so we are both doing much of what we tend to do when we get nervous. I have been the one making lists upon lists of things for her to take with her to college. I have created a sortable excel file list - sortable alphabetically, or by category. I like to think it's pretty darn thorough, too!

I saved this file here for those who may have a need to use such a list.

In other news, we just returned from a beautiful vacation to Florida, celebrating Alexa's graduation with a visit to Harry Potter world at Universal's Islands of Adventure. It was amazing. We followed the parks craziness with a few days in Sanibel Island which was a perfect way to rest and relax.

Came home to news that a dear friend had passed away. A quick means of eliminating the rest and relaxation and sending the anxiety levels through the roof!

Ah well, on the work of the day - continuing the process of preparing my 18 year old to move out into this world, and to set her up for success in college. Here's to the future - may hers be bright and filled with joy!!

Till later - could be months!
Vanessa

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Random blogger thoughts.

Wow - where has 2010 gone? Here are my random theories:
1) I've been dreaming for the past several months - dreams filled with working, commuting, eating, sleeping - repeat as needed.
2) The dog ate the pages of the calendar between January and November.
3) It's not really November, but instead a really goofy April Fool's Day joke.
4) I'm living my own personal "Groundhog Day" movie.
5) It is actually November 28th and I am just burying my head in the sand.

What has life been filled with - besides that listed in theory number 1 - lately?
1) Three kids in high school. Need I say more? (Of course, I don't need to but I most certainly will anyway!)
2) A 30 mile each way commute to work for me - which throws at least 2 gas station stops per week into the schedule.
3) Paul recently started a new job (a contract position) which led to a recent trip to France for a week. He has other travel coming up as well - to Houston TX and possibly to Ireland. His being away makes a crazy life turn absolutely insane!
4) Puppy dog has an urgent daily need for cuddles and scratching and he's darn persistent about seeking that time!
5) All the other normal average tasks that any family needs to do to keep a household running smoothly - making and traveling to doctor/dentist/orthodontist/optical/vet/orthopedist/rheumatologist appointments - did I mention we're getting older? Grocery/toiletry/gift shopping. Hair/groomer appointments. Mowing/snow blowing as needed. Cooking/cleaning/car maintenance. Choir concerts/fundraisers/conferences/college tours. And so on, and so on. You know how it is!

So, as you can read, we are alive. We try to find occasional quality time - like going out for brunch this morning. But mostly we are eeking out tiny bits of time to do the things we LOVE to do amongst all that we HAVE to do. Such is the human existence. And we will one day look back upon all this craziness with fond memories. At least, that is what I tell myself each morning as I contemplate not getting out of bed ;-)

On the bright side, we have a Christmas card pending at Shutterfly that should actually be delivered prior to the close of business on December 23rd. Cheers to checking off an item on the to-do list!!
Until next time,
Vanessa

2010 Christmas card

Classic Without Edge 5x7 folded card
Unique party invitations and announcements by Shutterfly.
View the entire collection of cards.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Summer?

I think I blinked and missed it. Here it is, almost the middle of August, sweltering hot, and the kids only have a couple of weeks until school starts again!


Sorry that I've been MIA. Something about being employed full-time has made blogging more challenging. After 10+ hours at my computer for work, it's not too terribly enticing to get onto my home office computer for more typing, thinking, writing, or anything like that. Plus, I've developed the sudden need to go to bed by about 8pm. Getting up at 4:30am makes me tired so early...


Let's catch you up:


  • The kids finished another school year in June. Brady is done with middle school and all three will be at the high school in September. Wow!

  • Alexa was named a National Merit Scholar, which means she has the chance to become a National Merit Semi-Finalist in September. She was so nonchalant about the whole thing. Told me so quietly, that she might as well have been telling me the sky was blue.

  • Amara auditioned and was chosen for the Chorale choir at the high school. That means a very special trip to Germany and the Czech Republic for her next spring! She is very excited about that!

  • Brady has become legendary at COD. If you don't know what COD is, trust me, you don't want to know. (Think PS3, shooting, and bombs.) Now he's working on narrating via a recording device which I cannot begin to explain, so I won't. He's also working on a Balhorn Family website. We'll let you know when it goes live!

  • Paul has been trying to find a job. It's a tough market out there right now. Leads are appreciated ;-)

  • Jackson is plump, happy, and begging for another "Crabby Dog Bone", so named because he'll guard it with his entire ferocious growl repertoire if you should dare to get too near.

  • And, as for me, I'm working full time in Clinical Research. Love my job!! But I do miss being around during the day to spend quality time with my kids, my dog, and my Target store. Our bank account has been grateful for the respite however!

So there you have it. Life in the Balhorn household in a nutshell.


And for my finale: my personal favorite photo of Alexa for her senior picture -->

Isn't she gorgeous? I can hardly wrap my neurons around the idea that she'll be a senior in high school in a few short weeks. Where does the time go? Seems like only yesterday she was toddling around...

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Still kicking in 2010.

Long time no post! That darn job of mine has kept me VERY busy so I haven't done much of anything besides eating, sleeping, and working...

In fact - life has been so hectic that I never mailed the Christmas cards...sigh. I'll have to get on the other computer to post it here. Later (think Christmas in July!)

2009 in review:
Highlights -
Travel to Mexico in February, the North Shore in June and November, and Las Vegas in August.

Going back to work in July. See previous post. And the beginning of this post. And perhaps follow me on my 30 mile drive to work at 5:45am on any given weekday. Or perhaps you are not a morning person - so you'd rather follow me home anywhere from 9 to 12 hours later...just pick a non-snowy day. That commute is killer in the snow.

The kids - growing older, wiser, funnier and ever more teenaged!

Lowlights -
Paul's layoff in October. We've become a statistic in the recession.

Here's to 2010 being a better year! (Clink glass with mine - the Pinot is on the counter!)

Is it really 8pm already? It's past my bedtime. Isn't aging fun?

Monday, August 24, 2009

Some highlights from Vegas







The top photo is from Zion National Park in Utah. The other three photos are from Valley of Fire - a Nevada State Park. Both parks were beautiful, rugged scenery. Makes one appreciate the hazards that the earliest settlers encountered as they traversed this enormous country...no highways, no resorts, no casinos! Don't quite know how they survived...and realizing that many did not.
More later. Exhausted from a busy schedule.



Saturday, August 8, 2009

Vegas, Bridesmaids, and Work.

Not necessarily in that order!

Highlights of the recent activities in our household:
  1. Paul is full throttle on a deck remodeling project. The man must always have a project. The more involved that Home Depot must be, the better.
  2. I went back to work. It's been 4 yrs. And I'm stepping into a new/old role at St Jude Medical - no, not the Children's Hospital with the infomercials - this is a biomedical device company. My title is "Safety Specialist" and that means I am the Clinical Studies department's go-to person for all adverse events. Now if you stretch your memory a bit, you might recall that I did this before. And yep, same company. Even some of the same people. So far - I am loving it.
  3. Right when I am ready to dig in and start contributing on the new job, we are heading south to the hot, hot desert. Off to celebrate Alicia and Brian's wedding in Las Vegas. Even couple of bridesmaids in our house, all set with their strapless tangerine dresses and strappy gold sandals. We are all very excited to get out of town and celebrate the newlywed's special day!
  4. Jackson will be terribly depressed as he must go to the....shhhhhh....k e n n e l....don't say it loud enough for him to hear. You will get a snarky look and maybe he'll even walk away in his "talk to the butt" way....
  5. And now, I must go remake my bed so that I can fall onto my freshly washed sheets and snore the night away....let's hope that the storms stay away tonight! I don't need anymore bizarre electrical impulses coursing through my body during the night as I await the final flash of a lightning strike death...don't ask. It was weird. And I will never sleep near a window during a storm again. Trust me on that....

Ok. Good night and good luck.