September 23, 2012

Playing The Name Game

Posted in Journal tagged , , , , , at 11:37 am by Jenn

In the recent months I’ve spent more time studying names than I have clinical nutrition which may be a problem as I enter the last class for my Master’s Degree, but that’s a post for another day. Names…

Everyone has one. One of the most important things our parents give to us is our name. As Scott and I prepare to become parents not only are we choosing which room to make the nursery, what crib and baby monitoring system to buy, we are also choosing names. Names…

People protect them. How often do you hear about someone “stealing” someone else’s name? Expectant moms often times won’t tell what names they are considering for fear of someone “taking” their name. I used to think this was ridiculous and I never quite understood it, until I started playing the name game. I mean seriously, how many names are really made up? Names are communal, there are thousands of them, and chances are you aren’t the only ________ (insert your name here) out there.

As a Jennifer growing up in the 70’s, I was never alone. I reluctantly became a “Jeni” as a teen – and even though my number isn’t 867-5309, I have given it out a few times. Growing up I would have liked to have had a name that was a little more unique – although the alternative was Davidene so I really am grateful for my parent’s choice of Jennifer.

For my child, any name in the Social Security Most Popular Baby Names (top 50) for the past 5 years is out of the question. I don’t want something so popular, nor do I want something so off the wall that he/she is made fun of or spends a lifetime correcting spelling, pronunciation or dreading role call in class. Names…

Names have meaning. We’ve all seen them, the baby name books. We’ve all looked up our own names, names of our loved ones, etc. I’ve spent hours and hours scanning these books looking for just the right names to put on the list. I’ve always liked “an” names. Beginning or end, doesn’t matter. I definitely want a name of Irish, Celtic or Gaelic origin. The internet also has a lot of sites to help sort through the sea of names. Some favorites are Behind the Name, The Baby Name Wizard and Baby Center. Names…

People’s opinions matter. Parents want unusual, unique names for their kids but in reality the kid just wants to fit in. Scott and I recently came to agreement on a few names…thank goodness, but he was still resisting my favorite – Lorcan.  Yesterday I ran down my list of favorites with a group of friends and was sad that none of them liked my favorite boy name either. How could they not like Lorcan?  It’s perfect – it ends in “an”, it’s Irish, it means little fierce one, it sounds good with our last name (as an added bonus there are two Harry Potter characters with this name), so what’s not to love?

After a good night’s sleep, today I’m crossing “Lorcan” off the list, and here’s why…

Lorcan, Lorcan bo-borcan, Banana fanfana fo-forcan, mee mi mo-morcan, LORCAN.

I’d like to give a special “thank you” to Adry (for Lorcan Dorkan), and the name game for helping me to see the light.


October 29, 2011

My New Venture

Posted in Journal tagged , , at 10:51 pm by Jenn

Over the summer my bestie Heather hosted an Arbonne get together at her house.  I attended but was afraid to try the face products because my skin is so sensitive.  I did try the Shea Butter Hand and Body Lotion and fell in love with it.  I was curious about the Lip Balm, so I ordered that too.

Since that party Heather decided to become an Independent Consultant for Arbonne and I attended several more workshops at various friends homes.   Each workshop brought a new product that peaked my interest and a new favorite product to love.  I even decided to go for it and try the RE9 skincare line and guess what…I loved it!  I became a Preferred Client so that I could receive 20% off all of my orders.

To support Heather I attended an Arbonne client appreciation night with her.  There I met an amazing group of women all with a common interest…Arbonne.   What really stuck out in my mind that night were the words of Laura Harry, the National Vice President who was also in attendance that night.  She discussed her “WHY” for doing Arbonne and she was so passionate.

On my way home I started thinking that I wanted to be passionate about what I do, and I am to a point…every patient I work with has 100% of my support and encouragement, but then I’m back to my desk playing the corporate game and it’s a game I’d rather sit out.

I found myself sitting at my desk thinking about Laura and her passion and that’s when I realized that I needed to prepare to make a change.  Heather and I met for lunch and I told her that I wanted to upgrade from Preferred Client to Consultant to earn the 35% off savings on all my purchases…and I purchase A LOT!  Since then I’ve realized the main reason I made this decision…my “WHY” is so that by the time Scott retires I can get out from under the thumb of the corporate world and be in business for myself, both with Arbonne and with nutrition.  I want to control when I work, where I work and how I work and Arbonne is going to get me there.

I’m jealous really…jealous that I’m not retiring.  I’ve worked longer than Scott has, just not for the same organization.  When do I get to retire?  Scott and I talked about this and his reply was, “You didn’t choose the right career”.  At the time it pissed me off.  Now looking back I realize, he was right.

Thanks to Heather, Erin and Laura for helping me to realize I was “going nowhere”.  And, if you are reading this, think about your current situation.  Are you passionate about what you do?  Arbonne has amazing products and business potential.  If you’d like more information or product samples, just ask!

June 1, 2010

Thirty Five

Posted in Journal tagged , , , at 8:07 pm by Jenn

That’s my number.  What’s yours?

I know it’s only two digits.  It’s not my phone number.  It’s my sleep number.  This weekend I was mattress shopping for the second time and was tired of listening to the salespeople try to sell me the mattress that fit their needs.  You know, the one that would bring them the most commission, not the one that fit the budget that I stated when I walked in the door and answered the questions I was asked….specifically “how much do you want to spend on a mattress today”.  When I answered that question I wasn’t joking.  Troy obviously thought I was and proceeded to show me mattresses WAY out of my range.  He was really pissing me off.  Anyone who knows me, knows that I hate to be “sold”.  If I’m spending they money, you are going to show me what I want to see and if after I’ve seen it, I’ll consider looking at the stuff you want to show me.  So, that being said, I left to check out another store.  Anything to get away from Troy.

I went to the mall to run a few errands at Kohl’s.  On the way through the parking lot I drove past Macy’s.  They have mattresses.  So I went in.  The saleswoman Madelyn was very nice…and helpful…and not pushy.  When I told her I wanted to walk around and look for a while she said ok and WALKED AWAY.   She didn’t hover,  or lurk, she walked way.  When I had questions I found her and asked my questions, got her card and headed to Kohl’s to look for dishes. 

On the way up the escalator I saw Sleep Number.  My friends Dave and Olga have a Sleep Number bed.  When Scott was home for Christmas we went over to their apartment and they both raved about the bed.  So there I was at the mall, I decided to go in and ask a few questions.  I got the whole demo.  My sleep number, and my profile.  I was pretty much sold on bringing Scott back to the store in a couple of weeks.  I asked about the special promotion and found out that it expired in a few days!  GASP!  What to do???  Scott was off looking for Penguins, so I did what any good spouse would do.  I whipped out my friend Visa and our new bed is going to be delivered any day!   

There are a few things that I’m not happy about with Sleep Number.  No free delivery.  You know, when you charge that much for a bed, you could deliver it for free.  The cost of the bedding.  Um, I don’t think so.  I did buy the mattress pad, but really, I’m not going to be adjusting my bed in the middle of the night so if my sheets shift, I’ll fix them when I make the bed in the morning and things will be nice and tight when I crawl in the next night.  AND if I really have a problem with the sheets shifting I’ll either sew elastic on to my sheets or find some inexpensive sheet stays. 

So, there you have it.  Sorry Troy, when you call (and I’m sure you’ll call), I’m going to be smiling as I tell you my sleep number.

May 16, 2010

365 Project

Posted in Journal tagged , , at 4:09 pm by Jenn

I started a new project today.  I know, I know….but this is a cool project.  It’s called 365 Project and I learned about it from a post on Javajem’s blog.  I thought it would be a fun since I’m getting ready to begin a new chapter of my life and I’m continuing to adjust to life back in the US.

Of course I forgot my camera when I headed out for my day today, but thankfully I had my phone so was able to capture a couple of pictures and I chose this as my first for the project

This stop wasn’t on the list of things to do today, but as the day went on, I kept thinking about cabbage rolls and sushki and simple cheese and I couldn’t stop.  So off I went in search of the Russian store in Virginia.  Thanks again to my phone and the Around Me app I was there in less than 20 minutes!  I found the sushki, my favorite green apple juice, the chumack ketchup that I need for the cabbage rolls, chocolate covered cheesecake (yum), Baltika 4 and 8 (beer) and some simple cheese.  The store was cute and reminded me a lot of a magazine (little store) that you would see in Belarus.  The women were nice and I thank them and bid them farewell in their native language….that drew a few stares!  It’s funny isn’t it.  Two years ago I never would have dreamed of walking in to a Russian grocery store and now I can walk in and I’m familiar with the products.  On my next trip I plan to get some pelmini and some lecho (what I use as the base for my newly famous chili).  Probably some more Baltika (call me crazy but I loved the beer).  As I type this post my sushki is soaking in milk and I’m going to treat my family to a fun snack. 

Since I was over in Virginia I decided to take a drive by the new place.  Here’s a picture – minus the Scott and Jenn love that it will be receiving in less than a month!

 I decided to drive around to locate the gym, swimming pool and grocery store.  Imagine my surprise when within walking distance I found – an East Asian Bistro, Noodles, Indian Restaurant, and Panera.  That just sweetened the deal.  I already knew there was a Japanese restaurant and movie theater but now I’m really excited to move.  I can taste the curry already!  The gym/swimming pool is within a 10 minute walk of the house AND there is a driving range on the opposite side of the street from the shops.  Fun times, fun times.

April 18, 2010

The Search is Over

Posted in Journal tagged , , , , at 9:10 pm by Jenn

You know, I just don’t know where the time goes.  It seems like it’s been a while since I’ve blogged, but it definitely doesn’t seem like it’s been over a month.  I have been pretty busy over the past month.  Most of my time has been spent surfing the internet, looking for a house to rent somewhere in Virginia halfway between Quantico, Va and Largo, MD.  That was the easy part.  There are a TON of places to rent.  The hard part was finding something in our price range in an area that we’d consider living, and in a house that we’d want to be in for 3 years.  That was no easy task.  I spent one weekend riding around near Occuquan.  The ride there from Upper Marlboro was LONG which told me right away that there was no way that I’d want to make that commute everyday.  I didn’t see much that I liked in the way of houses so I wasn’t heartbroken.  I decided to set my limits.  Nothing more than 30 miles from Largo, MD or the base for Scott.  That put us in the Alexandra/Springfield area.  Ok.  I can handle that commute.  I immediately thought about Kingstowne which was a neighborhood I was familiar with.  Unfortunately, that area was a bit out of our price range.  I checked the rental listings nearby and seriously spent two weekends driving by the outsides of places to determine if I even wanted to walk inside.  I found a great agent to help me with that part – Jennifer Rivera from Move For Free Realty.  She was one of the only agents that I could get to help me with my rental search so I want to give her a huge KUDOS for showing me around the insides of some of these places.  She does rentals and sales and she’s an awesome lady so if you are in the market in this area, give her a call.  I looked at 6 properties that day with Jennifer and I realized that in order to be in the type of house I wanted I was going to have to come up on my maximum price.  The following day I looked at two properties that I found on and thankfully my search was over. 

My mom went with me to look at the two properties.  I knew after visiting the first house that it was the perfect place for Scott and I to live.  It was in Kingstowne – just a little over what I originally said my “max” price was and it’s only 23.1 miles from Largo, and about the same to Quantico for Scott.  PERFECT!

So we signed a lease and we can move in starting May 28th.  I’m excited.  I haven’t seen some of my things for 3 years and most of my personal things for almost a year now.  It will be nice to have a place to go home to where I’m surrounded by my own things and best of all where I have the sweet sound of silence.  Ah, now that’s what I’m looking forward to.  Scott comes home in the middle of June.  Hopefully most of our household stuff will have arrived by then and I can have the house set up for the most part. 

Max will have a nice little fenced in yard, we have a nice deck off of the kitchen and best of all – a doggie door in the basement.  Max can come and go and do as he pleases, when he pleases.  That was the selling feature of course!

I have more to update on, and will do that later.  As for now, my search is over and it’s time for Desperate Housewives!

March 10, 2010

In The Ghetto?

Posted in Journal tagged , , at 12:05 am by Jenn

Some things just look odd.  You know, sheep feet on the sidewalk, aluminium foil on drying racks outside the hair salon and 4 black men on horseback in the median on Rt 202.

Really!  FOUR Black men on horseback.  I’ll admit that as soon as I saw them (well after the initial shock) I made a u turn (twice) to get these pictures.  Sorry they aren’t the best.  Since I went through all the trouble of the u turn, I should have just whipped out my camera too.  These were taken with my iPhone, which does a great job in a pinch and close-ups.

I couldn’t wait to get home to tell my dad.  His response.  “Oh yeah, there are a bunch of black cowboys around here.  There must be something going on at the equestrian center.” 

I must have been away a long time because in the PG County I grew up in (“da hood”) I never saw anyone riding horseback in the middle of the highway.  So, in response to Delia who commented on my aluminum foil post way back when.  See, I post pictures of crazy stuff that I see in the US too!

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