Sunday, November 15, 2009

Photos of recent events...

As promised, here are some photos from the events that Paige has blogged:

Napa Valley

We're just sitting outside in the garden enjoying some wine before our tour :)

Muir Woods

The entrance to Muir Woods.

Myself with some rather large trees in the background.

Perhaps this picture can give a little bit of perspective, but there's no way to effectively capture 300ft trees on camera.


The Bee and her Beekeeper, tasting the 'Toxic Tonic'.

Just part of the delicious spread.

That's all for now, short and sweet.

I'm sure there will be some more pictures taken on our trip back east next week, so stay posted!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Getting into the swing of things

Hello everyone!

We are getting so excited about our trip home in a few weeks!! :) We will be arriving in Jackson on Wednesday, November 18th around 2:00pm, and we'll be hanging out in Jackson until Friday afternoon. On Friday afternoon we will be OXFORD bound!!! Woohoo!! We will hopefully get into Oxford in time to go grab some food and then out on the square!! We are hoping to see as many people as possible!! We miss everyone so much! On Saturday we will most definitely be in the Grove and then at the game!! We will head out of Oxford on Sunday morning and fly back to California at 6:00pm on Sunday night! It is going to be an action packed trip, and we are hoping to get to spend as much time as possible with as many people as possible!

We're finally getting into as much of a routine is possible with our schedules. My schedule is all over the place, so its the one that is making things difficult. I am so thankful to finally be a took what felt like FOREVER, but I am finally licensed and on the schedule! However, my schedule is ridiculous. Unfortunately, I am working EVERY WEEKEND in November except for the one we are going to be out of town. I am also working a lot of overtime and filling in for people at other stores. I really don't mind this at all because most of the days I am off are during the week, so its not like I have too much to do during the day when everyone else is at work, so I may as well make some extra money! It is also helping me learn my way around the area! I am so thankful that we got me a Garmin when we moved here because otherwise I would constantly be lost trying to find all these different Wal-Marts! The first few days I worked alone, I was EXTREMELY nervous that I wasn't going to know what to do. But over the past few weeks, I have gained some confidence and now I feel completely comfortable working alone!

A few weeks ago, Scott and I decided to take a day trip to Muir Woods. Muir Woods is a redwood forest that has the tallest living things (the redwoods) in the world! We left home around noon and drove up to San Francisco where we stopped and got lunch at Memphis Minnies...a much needed little taste of home with the yummy BBQ! After stuffing ourselves, we headed over the Golden Gate to Muir Woods, which is about 12 miles past the Golden Gate. At Muir Woods we wandered around the paths and even hiked a little bit! The trees were just beautiful! Pictures do not even kind of do Muir Woods justice! There is no way to capture how tall the trees are because you can't even fit the entire tree into a picture. Scott will post our attempts to capture the beauty of Muir Woods soon!

For Halloween we invited over 2 other couples to have a little Halloween get together. I get really excited about all holidays, so I went all out and cooked all kinds of yummy "themed" goodies! I made snake breadsticks, pumpkin, ghost, and spiderweb cookies, eyeball cupcakes, and corn dip. It was so exciting to get to use all of our gorgeous serving pieces to put everything out! Once again, I'll have Scott post pictures soon!

This weekend we are planning on going to a birthday party for one of the new couples we met at the Halloween get together! We are loving the opportunities to keep meeting new people!

I have just found out that Adrienne is coming to visit us for our birthdays! She will be arriving on Scott's birthday, Friday, December 4th, and leaving the following Monday! We are really excited because Friday, December 4th is also the Microsoft Christmas Party, which we have heard is very very fun! We may try to take a little day trip to Napa or somewhere else to celebrate my birthday on Saturday, December 5th! Whatever we are doing I know it will be great to have both Scott and Adrienne in town to spend it with!

Well, I guess that's about it for our life update. I promise I will get Scott to post pictures of our latest adventures soon! I can't wait to get to see everyone soon! I miss yall!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Hello again!

I know it has been FOREVER since you have last heard from us...over a month...we know...sorry! For most of it, I was doing as my last blog said, studying like crazy! I took the NAPLEX, which is the Pharmacy Board Exam, and I passed!! woohoo!! That was very exciting because it made me an official pharmacist in Mississippi, since I had already taken the Mississippi Law Exam and passed it before we moved out here! A week after I took the NAPLEX, I took the CPJE, which is the California Law Exam. That exam is known to be very very hard, so I was super nervous and was trying to study extra hard! I had to wait almost a month before I heard the results, but last week we found out that I passed the CPJE, so I am officially a pharmacist in California!!! Well, almost officially...I still have to wait another week for them to process everything and THEN they will give me a license number and THEN I can begin acting as an official pharmacist! YAY!!!

Since I took the CPJE, I have been working part time in the WalMart in Mountain View (the one close to our house!!) so that I can get used to the store. One of the full time pharmacists from the Mountain View store just left to work at a brand new Walmart that opened closer to his house, which left a spot wide open for me to fill in! The timing could not have been more perfect! I am really excited about beginning full time in that store! I really like everyone that I work with, and I like the pace of the store too. It is consistently busy, so I don't get bored, but it rarely gets too busy to where I feel overwhelmed. But the best thing about it is that I live 5 minutes away, so the commute is wonderful!

We have finally gotten all of our furniture, so our house really feels a lot more like a home! I will take some pictures soon and post them so you can see our loveseat and ottoman! We love our little home so much! We are expecting the last shipment of our dishes next week, and then we will pretty much have a complete home!

A few weeks ago we took a day trip to Napa with another couple. We left Mountain View early and set out for a day of wine tasting and yummy food! We ate lunch at a restaurant called Botega that is owned Michael Chiarrelo, one of the chef's that has a show on food network and has also been on the show Top Chef Masters. The food was awesome, and I also got to see Michael Chirello doing a cooking demonstration, which really made my day!!! It is so amazing that we live so close and can just go away for such an amazing day us...we are not taking this for granted!! Another plus to our Napa trip is that we have discovered one of the VERY FEW chick fil a's in CA is about 20 minutes away from Napa! So of course, we took a little side trip on our way home to enjoy some yummy chick fil a that we have been missing so much! Our friends had never had chick fil a before, so we were very glad that we were able to introduce them to this little bit of heaven! It was the perfect ending to a wonderful day!

This past weekend, we celebrated me becoming a pharmacist by going to Alexander's Steakhouse, which is a SUPER NICE steakhouse in Cupertino. The food was unbelievable and the service was just as good! We spent about 3 hours eating dinner...everything was so good, we couldn't stop eating...we were still full today! My favorite thing about Alexanders was that they served everyone COTTON CANDY at the end of the meal....what a genius idea! I absolutely love cotton candy, and in my opinion, we need more opportunities to eat it than the occasional fair or circus.

Other than what I've already talked about, we have just been watching a lot of football and hanging out with friends! We feel so blessed that our life here has fallen into place so easily. We have no complaints, other than we wish we could see everyone at home too! We miss you!

COMING HOME UPDATE!! We think that we are going to be able to come home the weekend of November 21st, which is the weekend of the Ole Miss vs LSU game! We hope to be able to spend a few days in Jackson and then the weekend in Oxford! We are so excited! We miss the grove and watching our Rebels play! Hotty Toddy!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Busy, Busy, Busy! Study, Study, Study!

Once again, I have failed on keeping up with the blog! We have actually been very busy lately, so we have just forgotten to keep everyone updated! This is going to be a short life update on what we have been up to since the last post.

On the weekend after the successful dinner party that I posted about, we took a day trip to Santa Cruz, which is a beach that is like 30 minutes from our house. It is a very interesting place, that is VERY touristy. There is a boardwalk that is about a mile long and pretty much has a year round state fair type thing with rides and games right on the water. It was a good place to see once, but it was SO crowded and kind of dirty and touristy, so I think once might be enough for us. There are some other, more low key, beaches around Santa Cruz that we will most likely go to whenever we need our beach fix.

On the Sunday after the Santa Cruz trip, I woke up feeling TERRIBLE with a really bad sore throat and body aches. I pretty much stayed in bed for several days until I went to the doctor and got an antibiotic. It took me around a week to fully recuperate. Of course, as soon as I started feeling better, Scott started feeling bad, so we were sick and not doing too much for about 2 weeks.

However, right when I was starting to feel better, and Scott hadn't fully started to feel bad, Sophia and Matt (the people we had invited over for dinner) invited us to their house for dinner. We ate some yummy kabobs, homemade grilled pizza, and bananas foster at their house and had a great time!

The next week I started my first week of work at a store in Fremont, which is about 30 minutes away. It was good to get out and start working, but it was definitely an adjustment. Many things are different in California than they were in Mississippi, so I had to relearn different ways of doing things! I feel better now that I have gotten a little bit accustomed to working in a pharmacy in California.

While I was working, I FINALLY received the letter from the California Board of Pharmacy that allowed me to sign up for the NAPLEX (the pharmacy board exam) and the CPJE (the California pharmacy law exam). I will be taking the NAPLEX on Friday, September 4th, and the CPJE on Tuesday, September 8th. So until then, I have time off to study, study, study! Which is exactly what I will be doing, so I can pass and finally be a real pharmacist!

We did take a study break this last weekend, and we went for a walk at the Dish on Saturday afternoon. The Dish is the place that I went walking with Heather that is over by Stanford and has BEAUTIFUL views of the entire bay area. It was nice to finally get out and get some exercise and enjoy the beautiful day.

On Saturday night, we went out with Matt and Sophia and several of their friends to a country bar. It was very ironic going to a country bar in California, but it did make us feel a little at home :)

When we got back from the walk, we were talking about how great the weather is here, and how we need to find something to do to get out in it more often. We decided that we should take up golf! This is perfect since there is a course right by our house, we are both beginners so we will be learning together, and it will be something fun to do to go outside and enjoy the day! So on Sunday, we had our first lesson with the pro at the Shoreline Golf Course. We had a really good time! He gave us several drills to practice and told us to go to the driving range several times to master the drills before we sign up for our next lesson. We are really excited about our new hobby and can't wait to get back out there and hit some balls!

On Sunday night, Sophia and Matt came over to our house for dinner and to watch True Blood, a show that we all love on HBO.

All this week, I have been spending most of my time studying. Today I went with Heather to the Dish for a walk and then we went out to lunch afterward. We are planning on another morning walk on Friday, so I am excited to have someone to exercise with!

Sorry this was so much at one time! I miss everyone and love you all! :)

Friday, August 7, 2009

Successful dinner party!

So yesterday was a crazy day! It started by me waking up and deciding to do laundry, so I grabbed the landry basket and started down the stairs. Of course I slipped on the first stair and the heavy laundry basket dragged me down the entire flight of stairs!! To make matters worse, I was also holding a full glass of water which went ALL over me!! Haha...great start to the day! Today my rear is not feeling so swell and I also think I somehow managed to hurt my shoulder falling down the stairs? Not really sure how I did that...maybe the arm that was carrying the laundry got yanked? Oh well, hopefully it will be feeling better soon!

On Wednesday night my wish for us being motivated to tidy up and hang pictures came true! We picked up the pictures I had sent off to be printed and went by Michaels and WalMart to look for frames. We ended up finding some good frames at WalMart that were much cheaper than the Michaels frames, so we went with those! I call the wall across from the table our Oxford wall because the collage of frames are all Oxford pictures and the picture over my desk is a Larry Wamble print that was a wedding gift and says "We may not win every game...but we ain't never lost a party". We also hung my van Gogh painting over by the kitchen. Here are some pictures...

This picture is the overview of the wall. I think I could have gone a little bigger on the pictures and frames for the collage, but we had already bought and hung everything, so I think Scott may kill me if I go out and reprint pictures, buy new frames, and make him measure and hang a whole new set of pictures! The perfect alignment is definitely Scott's patience and need for perfection kicking in! It definitely took lots of measurements and working with the level to make that happen!

I'm not sure if you can really tell what these are, so here's the descriptions from top to bottom.
Faulker on the bench from on the square, Bottletree Bakery, Walk of Champions, Speed limit 18 sign from on campus, Rowan Oak, Ajax door

We had so many more great shots that we wanted to include but these were the pictures that we liked the best and thought looked the best in the frames.

This is a close up of the Larry Wamble print that is hanging above my desk.

This is the picture of the van Gogh print that is hanging right outside the kitchen.

I think that having pictures on the wall really cozies the place up! It feels a lot more like home now that the walls aren't so bare! And I really like that we were able to use pictures that we had that actually mean something to us and make them look great without spending much money! :)

So yesterday I spent most of the day preparing for dinner. I went ahead and prepared everything so that when they got there, all I had to do was pop things into the oven! For the appetizer I made Mrs. Thrash's cheesy corn dip. They LOVED everyone does!! For dinner I made Scott's mom, Donna's, spicy shrimp and rice casserole with bacon wrapped asparagus, salad, and garlic bread. And for dessert, we had homemade ice cream cake that was tiramissu flavored with Kahlua, coffee, and vanilla and chocolate ice cream! Everything was very yummy! All the prep work that day really paid off since everything was ready so I didn't have to spend all of my time in the kitchen!

We really like Matt and Sophia! Matt was Scott's mentor last summer when Scott was working for Microsoft as an intern. They just got married last year and are around our age. We got along great last night, and have already started talking about taking a trip to Napa soon!

I also enjoyed getting to use all of our new wedding gifts for the first time! I LOVE all of our Juliska pieces! They look so pretty together! Here is a picture of our set table.

It makes me so happy! I love all of our choices and how great they all look together!

Well today is back to the books, but I thought I would give a quick (or not so quick) update on how things went last night! I told y'all I was going to work on blogging more often!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Another long life update!

Sorry it has been so long since you've heard from me! I'm not sure what I have been doing, but I have been staying busy! I've gotten into a bit of a routine lately. I usually wake up as Scott is leaving for work, start some coffee, and eat some breakfast. After breakfast, I usually do whatever housework needs to get done, go work out, and figure out what we're going to have for dinner so I can get the meat out of the freezer to thaw. Then it's usually lunch time, so I make some lunch and relax and watch some TV while I eat. In the afternoon I usually study, write thank you notes, and run errands until around 5ish when I get ready to start cooking. I typically have dinner ready when Scott gets home around 6ish, and we eat dinner, and then watch TV or hang out until bed time! Haha, I can't believe we have already settled into this routine, but its actually really comforting and I like it a lot! :)

However, the routine is about to change! I met with Emmanuel, my Wal-Mart district manager, last week, and we got me put into the system and all ready to start work! Until I get licensed, I am going to be filling in wherever they need someone, so I will be going to several different stores in the area. As of right now, my first week will be August 17-21st (Monday-Friday) from 10-7. I'm excited, but also nervous about starting work out here! I've gotten pretty good at this whole house wife thing :)

Last Friday I met the across the street neighbor, Heather, when I was out studying. Later on that afternoon, she and her husband, Ben, came by the invite us over for dinner on Saturday. Unfortunately we had already made plans with one of Scott's coworkers to go to a movie on Saturday night, so we had to decline :( However, we did go over to their house later that evening and drank some wine and talked with them for a few hours!

On Saturday night, Scott and I met one of his coworkers to go see Funny People. It was an interesting movie...not really what we were expecting. It kind of had some slow depressing parts, which was kind of weird since it was advertised as a comedy. All in all, it wasn't terrible, but it certainly was not in my list of favorite movies. After the movie, we were supposed to meet up with his wife, Sophia, who had been in San Francisco all weekend. However, since the movie lasted so long (almost 3 hours!) and she got home later than she expected and was tired, we decided to postpone to another time.

On Sunday, Scott and I went to a church down the road. We first tried out this church the Sunday before, but there was a guest speaker that Sunday, so we decided to give the actual preacher a try. We had decided to try out this church because we had read good things about it on (a common place to go to see reviews of different businesses, etc.). I know that's a weird place to find a church, but when you don't really know people, it's the best you can do! Everyone had raved about how great the church was, and it was also just down to street from our house, so we thought we would give it a try. The first Sunday we went was the one with the guest speaker. We were not really into the guest speaker, but decided to give it a second try to hear Pastor Paul, who everyone had raved about on Yelp. It wasn't necessarily bad, it is just not really what Scott and I are looking for. It's a very charismatic church and kind of feels more like you are listening to a motivational speaker than a preacher. It was nice that we were able to walk there, but I think we will be looking for other options in the coming weeks.

Today I had my first outing with a friend! Heather, the girl from across the street, called me yesterday and asked me if I wanted to go walking with her today. We went to this place called "The Dish" that is over in Palo Alto right next to Stanford. It is a really neat trail that wanders for like 3.5 miles over hills and you can see the entire bay area was gorgeous! I'm really glad that she introduced me to it! We also took her little girl, Bella, who is 6 months old. I'm new to having friends with babies, but Bella is a great baby and loves to go on walks! We're looking forward to hanging out with Heather and Ben more often!

Tomorrow night we are having Matt and Sophia (Matt is Scott's coworker that we went to the movie with) over for dinner! I'm going to be working on planning out what we are having tonight, so I can go by the grocery store tomorrow and start cooking! I'm hoping that this will motivate us to tidy the place up a bit! My newest project is for the big empty wall next to the table. I edited some pictures I have from favorite places around town in Oxford and on campus, and made them all black and white and am having them printed as 5x7s. Right now my plan is to frame them in black frames and do a collage type scattering on the big wall. We'll see how it turns out!

I am sad to report that my geraniums that were so pretty in one of the previous posts are struggling at the moment. :( I'm not really sure what I have done to them...I am doing the same thing I have been doing the whole time. I usually water them daily and pick off the dead buds. At first when I picked off the dead buds, new ones would start to bloom very quickly, but now they aren't really coming back anymore. I bought some Miracle Grow yesterday and gave them some of that, so I am hoping that maybe they were just hungry. Please let me know if you have any idea what I might be doing wrong or need to be doing! They don't look quite as pretty in front of the house with no blossoms!

Also please email me ( or comment here if you have any good recipes that I can make ahead and freeze or good crock pot recipes! I am trying to gather some of these so we can still have food when I am not here all day to prepare it!

I'll try to get a little bit more regular at blogging! I'll report back on how dinner and the picture hanging goes!

Monday, July 27, 2009

The Routine

Sorry for the long delay between posts, we haven't had too much going on recently... and we've been thoroughly distracted watching 'Lost'.

Work has been going well, and I'm finally getting to the point where I can meaningfully contribute (there's a whole lot to learn and get accustomed to before you can really get much done). I've got my own office, fully equipped with two brand new computers, and a fully stocked soda refrigerator is just down the hall :)

As Paige mentioned in the previous post, I've been playing basketball on Tuesdays (regularly scheduled pickup games after work on-campus). The first week I was downright awful, making about 2% of my shots and turning the ball over just about every chance I could. Last week was quite a bit better, and while I still didn't shoot the lights out, I handled and distributed the ball pretty well (and played some halfway decent defense).

Aside from actual sports, I've also been playing some virtual golf. Several friends and I have picked up 'Tiger Woods 10' for Playstation3 and have been enjoying some friendly online competition. The combination of the great weather out here and the fun I'm having with 'fake' golf is almost making me consider attempting to play some actual golf one of these days... we'll see...

Paige has been cooking almost every night, and I must say that she's getting pretty darn good at it. It's pretty much the routine for me to come home, say 'Hello', fire up a round of Tiger Woods while Paige cooks dinner, and then we both sit down and watch Lost for a few hours (halfway through the third season).

Anyways, that's my quick update and a rundown of the routine, hopefully we'll have some more exciting things to tell you about soon...

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince!!!!!!

Haha, yes I'm a huge dork! Scott and I are so excited that today is the big day!! We have been preparing for the last week by watching all of the 5 movies preceding the one that comes out tonight! I wish we could have gone to the midnight showing last night, but since Scott has to do this silly thing called work, we decided to wait until tonight to go. I can't wait 'till tonight!

Other than watch lots of Harry Potter, Scott and I have not really done anything too exciting since the last blog. Last weekend we went shopping (surprise, surprise) to try to find accessories and things to hang on the walls. Even though all of our furniture (at least the furniture we have gotten...) and stuff is in place, it still doesn't really feel complete since all of the walls are bare, picture frames and vases are empty, you get the picture. I'm sort of OCD and like things finished, so its driving me crazy that the house is still unfinished. But i KNOW it is going to take a while, and we can't buy everything now, so I'm trying to be patient and focus on the beautiful things we already have!

We have finally found throw pillows for the couch and the bed! This is sadly a huge accomplishment since we have probably bought and returned at least 10 pillows already! Any by "we" I mean "me"...Scott has long grown tired of the process, and his new response is, "if you are happy, then I am happy"! Haha, I think he's just really tired of coming home to new pillows everyday. We also now have a chair to go with our couch!! Pottery Barn delivered the chair on Tuesday, so we now our living room is a little more complete. We are still waiting on our loveseat (keep your fingers crossed that it fits...) and our ottoman/coffee table and end table. Apparently those take like 2 months to assemble for some reason, so we aren't expecting those to arrive until the end of August. We are very happy with our choice on the chair! I think it goes very well with the couch and looks really good in the room as well. I also used some Pottery Barn credit to buy some accessories for our master bathroom. So overall, we are definitely making progress on the house, and it is slowly, but surely, coming together!

On the pharmacy front, I have contacted Wal-Mart, and I am meeting with Emmanuel (my district manager) sometime in the next two weeks. I am hoping that I will have some idea of when I will be able to take my NAPLEX by the time I talk to him. However, he told me not to hold my breath on anything moving quickly with the CA Board of Pharmacy since they are understaffed and have to deal with the entire state of California...and to make matters worse, CA is bankrupt so they have cut their work week down to 4 days. Therefore, he told me not to expect to be fully licensed for another 2-3 :( However, since I have sent in everything they have asked for very quickly, and since I sent in my original application 2 months ago, I am hoping that the process will move a little more quickly for me. Keep your fingers crossed for me!

The other thing that we are working on right now is trying to decide which gym to join. We have gotten some free trials to several of the gyms and we are currently in the process of trying them out. I went to a Zumba class yesterday at 24 hour fitness. I loved it!! For those of you who don't know, Zumba is pretty much a dance/aerobic class where you pretty much do Latin inspired dance moves mixed with hip hop and a little bit of some other stuff...honestly, I have no idea what moves you are really doing, but it is so much fun and a GREAT workout! I highly recommend going and trying it out if your gym offers it! And don't let insecurities stop you because you pretty much just laugh the whole time because no one but the instructor can actually perform the moves properly, but its a really good time trying! If you're curious, click here to see a video that shows people doing Zumba. Another positive that came from doing Zumba is that I met a girl there that goes every week and she usually has a friend that she comes with, so hopefully I can make some friends there too! :)

Our neighbor Cathy brought over a yummy cobbler yesterday too! Budding friendships everywhere! I have talked to her a few times when we have both been outside. She and her husband are both attorneys, and her husband is a lawyer at Google. They seem really nice, so we are looking forward to getting to know them better!

Scott stayed after work yesterday and played basketball with some guys from work. He always really enjoys playing basketball, so I think he's really excitied that they do this every week! So maybe Tuesday will be Zumba day for me and basketball day for Scott! We'll see, but we're slowly but surely getting out there and meeting people!

Here are some pictures of the new things in the house that I was talking about earlier.

This is our couch and chair from two different angles. The lighting isn't great, so everything looks a little darker than it is. As you can see, we desperately need something on the big blank walls...

This is our bed with the pillows I have FINALLY chosen! Once again, we desperately need things to hang on walls! If anyone has any suggestions, please let us know!!!

This is the master bathroom. I got the accessories from Pottery Barn. I still think it needs a little something, but oh well...once again please bring forth any suggestions! There I am in the shower taking the picture! :)

I forgot to brag on Scott earlier, so I'll do it now. For those of you who don't know, Scott built this center piece from scratch a few years ago to put his TV on. Since it was a little big for our living room space, we were puzzled with what to do with it. We had finally decided to put it in the garage for storage. We had been planning on getting a little table or something to put under this window, and then Scott got the bright idea to try putting this "TV stand" under the window. I think it worked very well!! And actually, it saved us from buying two pieces or furniture. We were also trying to figure out what we were going to do with all of our DVDs and media equipment, and we had decided that we were going to have to buy some sort of media stand. However, we didn't end up having to since Scott had actually specifically designed the shelves to be the perfect size to hold DVDs! So here is our old TV stand that has been made pretty on the top by beautifiul wedding gifts and functional on the bottom as a place to hold all of our movies! Also, you can see my herbs growing in the pot on the left :)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

I'm back!

Hey everyone! I am so sorry it has been so long since you have heard from me! I'm going to try to give a brief catch up on what I've been up to for the past 2 weeks.

As Scott has told you, my parents came last week for a long 4th of July weekend. We had such a great time! We did as much as we could possibly do in the brief time they were here. My mom got here on Tuesday and we pretty much just ran errands around town. We started the changing my name process, but I'll talk more about that ordeal later. My dad got here on Wednesday and we just rode around Mountain View and came home and ate the dinner and cake I had prepared to celebrate his birthday! We spent Thursday showing my parents around Mountain View and the surrounding towns and walking around the cute little downtown Mountain View.

Friday was the beginning of our day trips. We woke up early and started the drive to Napa Valley! Scott had planned us out an adventure to 4 different wineries and a tour at one. It was an amazing day of wonderful wine and very yummy food!

On Saturday, we set out to go down to Monterey and Carmel. They are such cute little towns on the beach with really cute downtown and wharf areas! Once again, had a wonderful lunch of clam chowder in a sourdough bread bowl (I don't think I'm EVER going to get sick of that meal!). When we got back to Mountain View we headed down to the Amphitheater which is down the street from Google and Microsoft. There is a really pretty park next to the Amphitheater where you could watch the fireworks from if you didn't buy tickets to sit in the Amphitheater, so that is what we did. It was an amazing show! They had the symphony playing and the fireworks went along with the symphony! They were by far some of the best fireworks I have ever seen!

On Sunday it was off to San Fransisco! We started out going to the train station and riding CalTrain to San Fransisco. This is super convienient when you are going to see the Giants since it lets you off right at the Giants stadium! We got to see a great game (for Scott and me) with the Astros blowing out the Giants!! Scott and I sported out Astros t-shirts and must have brought them some luck :) After the Astros game, we headed down to the wharf area where we got some wonderful seafood and, of course, a sunday from Ghiradelli!

On Monday we took my dad to the airport :( It was back to the real world and Scott went off for his first day of work. My mom and I made it our mission to go and find the perfect patio furniture for our little front porch. We went all over the Bay Area, but finally found the perfect one at target! It's a cute little black wrough iron table that is the perfect size and has two little chairs that go with it! Here is a picture...

The shadow is kind of weird, but hopefully you can get the idea! I LOVE them! Scott and I sat outside last night and drank some wine at our new table :)

Yesterday (Tuesday), we took my mom to the airport EARLY in the morning. After Scott went to work, I started the wonderful task of getting my name sorted out. Here's the deal with that...First I went to the social security office and took my birth certificate, marriage license, all that jazz, and asked them to change my name to Paige Prestage Blackburn. They did this no problem. The next day when I went to get my California drivers license, I took them all of the same info, and they said absolutely not. They aren't supposed to change a first name unless there is a court order to do so. So then I had my social security card with "Paige Prestage Blackburn" on it and my CA drivers license with "Kimberley Paige Prestage Blackburn" on it. Well the California board of pharmacy won't let you sign up for the board exam unless the name you sign up with and have in their system matches your ID. My old name is the name in their system so I need to change my name in their system. In order to change my name, I have to have an "EXACTLY" matching social security card and drivers license that I can make copies of to send to them. ughh!!! Haha, so yesterday, I went back up to the social securitiy office (which by the way is very similar to waiting at the DMV) and waited in the LONG line to go BACK and change my name AGAIN. The little man who helped me was not at all friendly, and was extrememly angry that they person who had helped me before actually allowed me to change my name to Paige Prestage Blackburn in the first place. Oh well, I am officially "Kimberley Paige Prestage Blackburn" now...quite a mouthful, but I guess its the best I can do. I'm thinking of going to get my name changed but apparently its a lot of money and takes a long time, so I just don't know if it is worth the effort. We'll see...

So after I finally left the social security office yesterday, I went off the the DMV to change the title on my car so I could get California tags. That took about 2.5 hours, but FINALLY I have a California license plate!! Woohoo!! Haha, funny note, I had to get a smog check in order for all of this to be able to go through...not something you have to really do in Mississippi...

Here is my new car tag!

Scott and I also took a trip to Lowe's to get some wiring for him to set up his new sound system for the TV and for me to get some plants to put at the front of the house. It took forever, but we finally settled on some pots and flowers to place on either side of our front door! When we got home, I got to do something I've never done before...pot plants! Haha, I'm sure it was quite a funny sight to see, but I think I did an okay job! They make me really happy :) Here is our new and improved front porch!

And the close up...

I think it gives it a nice homey touch! Well I'm off to start studying for the NAPLEX :( I promise to blog more frequently now that I've slowed down a bit! Sorry this was so long, but there was a lot of catching up to do! Miss everyone!!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Taking Advantage

Sorry for the long delay in between posts, we've been keeping busy again this week.

As we said in the previous post, our first visitors (Paige's parents) arrived on Monday and Wednesday, and we've kept busy ever since.

I'm sure Paige will do a much more thorough job of describing this week's events, but I'll do a quick rundown with some photo gallery links.

Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday were fairly laid-back days, mostly filled with showing Nat and Cindy around town and taking care of things at the townhouse.

Friday, however, we took a trip up to Napa Valley, which was awesome. We visited four wineries for tastings (Clos du Val, Chimney Rock, Pine Ridge, and Mumm), including a really great tour at Pine Ridge. Lunch at Bistro Jeanty was also fantastic. The pictures can be found here.

Yesterday we took a trip down south to Monterey and Carmel-by-the-Sea. We walked around both of the downtown and beach areas, and then headed to the 17 Mile Drive. Our driving tour included a quick stop at Pebble Beach, including a photo-op at the 18th green. The pictures can be found here.

Today will include a trip up to San Francisco where we will see the Giants take on the Astros and hopefully find a good place to eat. Details to follow...

Monday, June 29, 2009

Things In Their Places

This post will be short and sweet, since we've done little besides unpack, clean, and organize.

All of the boxes have been emptied, and they're now stacked up in the garage, waiting for the moving company to come on Wednesday to pick them all up.

We spent a bit of yesterday and today getting our phone plans all sorted out (cell numbers remain the same), but we're going to try to use the house phone when we can (unlimited), so if you need that number, send one of us an email or text and we'll pass it along.

Comcast is scheduled to come tomorrow, so barring unforeseen issues, we should have cable by lunch :)

While we still have plenty of organizing and arranging to do, the new place was in good enough shape to take some pictures of, which you can find here.

Our first visitor (Paige's mom), arrives in about 30 minutes (her dad comes Wednesday), so I've gotta go ahead and wrap this up.

There should be some more interesting posts coming soon, as we will likely make a few trips to San Francisco and Napa Valley while Paige's parents are in town.

See ya!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Home At Last

We finally got to spend the night in our new bed :) The townhouse is beginning to feel like 'home' now that we have all of our stuff (and some of it is actually put in it's correct place).

Since we've gotten a bit behind in our blogging, I'll give you a quick recap:

Thursday - This was supposed to be the day that DirecTV installed our dish and started service. Before the installers came to the house, I had contacted the HOA about correct dish placement (gotta follow all the rules...), and they sent me a picture of a dish mounted to a conduit on the roof. When I showed the same picture to the DirecTV guys, they said that their new dishes are too large to mount that way, and that they had to bolt it down. The HOA obviously doesn't want to void the roof's warranty by bolting things down into it, so DirecTV is a no go. The only real problem with not having DirecTV is that I can't order NFL Sunday Ticket and watch all of the Titans games (and that we're now forced to have Comcast). The rest of the day was spent doing more unpacking and organizing. We did manage to take a break Thursday evening to go have dinner with David Long, a fellow Jacksonian who went to school at Stanford and has been working for Google's legal department for the past 2 years (you may remember him as the really tall guy from Prep who played basketball and football).

Friday - Delivery day! Our couch, bedroom suite, and mattress set were delivered in the early afternoon. The couch looks really good and is quite comfortable, but we think it managed to grow a bit larger since Paige made her model of the living room. Anyways, the couch and love seat are something we bought to hold on to, so if it's not perfect this year, we can deal. I spent several hours assembling the bedroom furniture, and it all looks great. We definitely made a good choice there. The mattress set is ridiculously comfortable, so we're feeling good about the bedroom setup.

Today - We slept in today (just getting moving really), but we've got plenty planned to do. We've got to find a replacement for my destroyed desk, so I think we're going to make another trip to IKEA. I also may try to mount the bedroom TV to the wall. There's also always more unpacking, but the more we unpack, the more boxes pile up (the garage is already half-full, as is our downstairs entryway), and those aren't getting taken away until Wednesday.

We'll post pictures and some more description later this weekend, assuming we have the place in a decent state by then.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Moving Day

After the nice break that was our trip to San Francisco, the past two days have been back to business.

Tuesday began with the delivery of our new TV and stand from Fry's, which I spent the next few hours assembling. While it wasn't very fun to build, the end product looks great. I then began my second assembly of the day, the wine tower. It was significantly easier to put together, and it also turned out nicely.

After that we took a trip to Bed, Bath, & Beyond and Wal-Mart to pick up cleaning supplies and various necessary everyday household items (of which there are thousands). Tons of fun, lemme tell ya...

Dinner was at Chipotle, which is a burrito/taco restaurant similar to Moe's. We were both pretty hungry, so it was extra delicious.

After dinner we browsed TJ Maxx/Homegoods, and then went in search of a reasonably priced stainless steel trash can. We found one at our third stop, Target, although it's not quite as large as we might have liked. We then called it a night.

Today was another early day, and it was also a long one.

The movers arrived with our stuff at around 8 this morning, and they wasted no time in getting the truck unloaded. Everything was off the truck and inside by around 11:30. Well, I say everything, but what I mean is everything but the desk (my desk from Nashville) and bookcase (Paige's ladder bookcase from upstairs), which were destroyed in transit. Apparently we'll be compensated for them, so we'll see how that goes (we weren't particularly attached to either, so it isn't all bad). Otherwise everything seems to be in good shape, although the packing crew did pack a few boxes quite oddly and label them incorrectly.

We've been unpacking the kitchen and living room stuff since the first box came off the truck, and Paige is still at it in the kitchen (working on the Christmas stuff now). We haven't really even touched our clothes or any of the bedroom boxes, so we're hoping to get to them tomorrow. We know that the unpacking process will take some time, but neither of us are particularly patient right now.

Sorry for the lack of enthusiasm in this post, but Paige and I are both exhausted. The blog will pick back up a bit once we get some of the house stuff settled, and we'll also probably be in much perkier moods :)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Day Trip to SF

Since today was the only day for the next week that we were free of deliveries and installations, we decided it would be the perfect day for a day trip! We decided to try out the Caltrain, which is the train that runs all through California. Since we are still in corporate housing that is right in downtown Mountain View, we were able to walk over to the train station. The train ride from Mountain View to San Francisco is about an hour long. Once you get to San Francisco you hop on a bus and go wherever you like! It is so much easier than driving and having to worry about parking and all that mess! The bus dropped us off right by Fisherman's Wharf and we immediately focused on getting lunch. We were craving clam chowder, so we went to Boudin's which is a restaurant right on Fisherman's Wharf that is famous for its fresh sourdough bread and clam chowder. Absolutely delicious! We also made a special trip up to Ghirardelli and split a World Famous Chocolate Sunday! :) After satisfying our sweet tooth we just wandered around taking in the city. We wandered the "crookedest street in SF", watched sea lions lounge at Pier 39, and walked up and down the SF bay. Click here to see pictures.

We ended up getting back to Mountain View around 6ish, and it was immediately off to do more shopping. We started by going to Ashley furniture and ordering the square ottoman and end table that Scott posted pictures of yesterday. Then we went to do some more research into accent chairs. We are still undecided on this, but hoping to reach a decision and have one ordered by tomorrow afternoon!

We happened upon the BEST burger place in as we were coming back from the Stanford shopping center in Palo Alto. We were starving and Scott wanted a burger so we stopped at a place called The Counter in downtown Palo Alto. It was a gourmet burger joint and had a create your own burger worksheet. First you decided your meat (beef, turkey, chicken), then your cheese (all kinds of specialty cheeses!), then up to 4 toppings (there are like 25 to choose from!), then your sauce (once again, all sorts of different options), and then finally your bread! Scott was boring and pretty much just got a cheeseburger. I mixed things up and got a turkey burger with some kind of provolone and roasted red peppers, tomato, field greens, and red onion with sun dried tomato vinaigrette on a honey wheat bun! It was AMAZING!! We're definitely going back to this place!

Tonight we also cleaned up and started packing most of our stuff since we are moving out of corporate housing on WEDNESDAY!! We are so excited and ready to start moving into our new home!

Tomorrow morning begins the crazy week of moving in!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Burning Up The Plastic

Paige is busy reading trying to finish the last book in the Twilight series, so I'm on blog duty again.

The past two days have been taken up primarily by furniture shopping. Yesterday we were able to find a sofa (it's a sleeper so we'll have extra room for you all to come visit ;) ), love seat (matches the sofa), bedroom suite, duvet, and wine rack from Crate and Barrel, a TV (for the living room) and stand from Fry's, and a mattress set from Mancini's Sleep World. Talk about an expensive day...

Today we got up at a decent time and headed over to the townhouse to wait on delivery of our giant washer and dryer, which our landlord kindly purchased and had installed. After that, we headed back out furniture shopping, this time in search of an ottoman or coffee table and an accent chair. We think we've decided on a square leather-topped ottoman from Ashley Furniture (with accompanying end table), but we're not quite sold. We've also spotted a few chairs from Crate and Barrel and Pottery Barn that we like, but we've got to narrow those down as well.

Things are really starting to come together, and by the end of this week we should have a functional, semi-furnished home. Needless to say, we're both really excited to have all of our things from out of storage in addition to all of the new furniture that will be coming.

So, for anybody considering a trip this direction, we'll be ready to accept visitors as soon as next week, so come on out :)

Pictures of our purchases/considerations:
(click to open full size)

Friday, June 19, 2009

No Longer Homeless

Well, I can proudly say that we are no longer without a home! Paige and I (yes Scott is indeed blogging) signed a lease today on a brand new townhouse in Mountain View. We were given keys as soon as the lease was signed, so today marked the beginning of "nesting" (as Paige so fondly refers to it).

We spent a good bit of the day taking measurements and modeling furniture layouts, followed by yet another trip to several furniture stores. Paige did take some pictures of the place (click here), and you can even see me struggling through seemingly endless phone calls to DirecTV and AT&T (both will be done by Thursday).

The movers also set a date for delivery of our items from storage, which is Wednesday, June 24 (not as soon as we would have liked). AT&T has scheduled phone and internet installation on Wednesday, so we should have a busy day and a full house.

We're hoping to make a few furniture purchases tomorrow (so far we haven't actually bought anything, just done a lot of browsing), specifically a bedroom suite and a couch. We'll see how any of that turns out...

Anyways, it's time for me to go to bed, goodnight.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

The Waiting Game

The past three days have been dedicated to finding a home. I think we have looked at every home the area has to offer, and we have finally reached a decision! It is actually the very first one we looked at, the one that I have described in a previous post. It is a three story townhouse. The bottom story is the garage and laundry room, the second story is the kitchen, dining room, living room, and 1/2 bath, and then third story is two bedrooms and two bathrooms. We went to lunch with the owner today and got along with him really well. We should hopefully be signing a contract either Friday or Saturday! Our stuff will hopefully be able to be moved out of storage and into the townhouse on Monday! I will post up pictures as soon as we can take some!

We have also been looking at furniture whenever we haven't been looking at houses. We really like the Crate and Barrel stuff, and we will most likely be getting a bed and couch from there. We went to probably the worlds largest Ikea store yesterday...we actually got lost in it!

Today we tried our first Mexican restaurant, La Fiesta. I'm just not so sure about mexican food with no cheese just doesn't have the same charm. Apparently it was voted to have the best mexican food in the Bay Area. I'm really hoping that we just have completely different taste buds than all these people because I was quite dissappointed. I guess we'll just be getting our mexican fix whenever we come home!

I am hoping we can either take a day trip to San Fransisco or Napa Valley in the next week. There is a train from Mountain View to San Fransisco that takes about an hour, so we think that could be fun to do one day!

Hopefully next time we post, we will not be homeless! Everyone keep your fingers crossed that this deal goes through! We'll keep you posted.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


Today was an extremely long day! We met with Jennifer, our real estate agent, at 10:45 AM and finally returned home from looking at 4:30 PM. We saw around 9 properties today, some that we really liked, some that we didn't. We still have a few more appointments to go to both Wednesday and Thursday. We still have a lot of pro/conning to do before we make any decisions, but at least we know we have a lot of good options! I'll probably post more details about our final options either Wednesday or Thursday when we have seen all of our options!

The really good new is that we got our cars today!!! We were told it would be 10 to 15 days until we got them, but we got them in 6 days! They also make the entire journey with no bumps or bruises which is also great news!

Sorry there isn't much to report. We're both too exhausted to rehash all the details today!

Monday, June 15, 2009

A Low Key Day...

Today was a pretty low key day. We woke up and put on our exercise clothes and went for a walk through downtown Mountain View. I think my favorite thing about downtown Mountain View is that either way you look down the street, there is a view of mountains! Such a beautiful place! :) This picture isn't particularly pretty...but it gives the idea of just seeing the mountains as you are driving down the road.

I also really like how all of the restaurants have an extra little sidewalk with tables and umbrellas so that you can always sit outside and enjoy the beautiful weather!

On our way back from the walk, we stopped at Long's Drug Store (which CVS is currently in the process of taking over) and bought some groceries and other things we needed. It is so handy living within walking distance of everything! I feel like I should also comment on how AMAZING the weather is here. The air is so thin and crisp...quite the opposite of the ridiculous humidity we are accustomed to! Today I actually had to wear a fleece when the sun went behind the clouds!

This afternoon we went and saw The Hangover. We had very high expectations after talking to all of our friends who have seen the movie, and I've got to say that it definitely lived up to all the hype! After the movie we decided to drive around and explore the city. Scott was trying to teach me the roads, but with my sense of direction, we didn't really get anywhere. We have decided that I am just going to have to drive from now on so that I can't zone out and lose track of where we are. Tonight we are just taking it easy and relaxing. It will be a long day tomorrow looking for a place to live!

Tomorrow morning we are meeting with the real estate agent at 10:45 AM. Our first appointment is at 11:00 AM. Keep your fingers crossed for us that we can find our new home tomorrow! We are so ready to finally have a place to call home and begin the "nesting" process! I would really like to start moving and looking for furniture before Scott starts work on July 6th.

We'll post more about what we see tomorrow!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Welcome to our blog

Hey everyone!

Since we have just moved to California, we have decided to start a blog so all of our friends and family can easily keep up with us.

I guess we can start with the getting here process, which was, of course, ridiculously long and drawn out and went wrong at every step possible. It all started at 6:30 AM when we woke up early because we still had not packed for our move to CA. Our flight was supposed to leave at 9:40 AM, but when we got to the airport to check in, we discovered that our connecting flight from Dallas to San Jose was cancelled. Finding this out and sorting out the problem took about 45 minutes because there was only one competent person working behind the counter and about 20 other people were having the same problem we were. I won't even go into the ridiculous amount of time spent on the concerned mothers that were sending their daughters off on their first "unsupervised flight" to girl scout camp that were ahead of us in line. We finally got our flight rescheduled to 2:40 that afternoon so we got to hang out in Jackson for a few more hours.

When we got back to the airport we started checking our bags which they were so graciously supposed to comp for us. However, my bag was 5 lbs overweight so that was going to be a $50 overweight bag fee!! Completely ridiculous. So we started throwing things out of my bag and got it down to 50.5 lbs, which they decided they would let slide.

Things went pretty smoothly until we arrived in San Jose, CA, and tried to go get our rental car. Microsoft was in charge of booking all of our travel plans and everything and we just had confirmation numbers that they had sent us. When we got to the rental car place, they could not find our name on the list. Of course, they're computers were down so they couldn't look up the confirmation number that we had been given. We spent around 45 minutes trying to figure out this problem, and finally we just got a car and we're just going to hope that everything sorts itself out once the computers are finally back up.

We finally arrived at the apartment complex where our corporate housing is located. We had an email that gave us very specific instructions on where to go to find the lock box that contained the key to the apartment, so we got that no problem. However, there were no instructions whatsoever to the actual apartment. There were 4 main buildings all in a square formation and each unit was marked with a four digit number. We were given a three digit number in the email and no building number. We wandered around for about 30 minutes searching for anything that was remotely similar to our number. Brief recap, we had woken up at 6:30 AM, and it was now about 12:30 AM central time. We were both extremely frusterated and about to give up, and then we found it! The random 5th building off to the side of the other buildings that didn't match the other buildings and was for some reason marked with three digit numbers instead of four digit numbers like the other buildings. Woohoo!

So long story, but we finally found our "home" for the time being. We pretty much dropped our stuff and crashed immediately. The apartment is pretty nice. Its a fully furnished one bedroom apartment and is SO SO SO much better than a hotel would be!

Today we woke up late and then wandered around Mountain View until lunch. We ate at a really yummy bakery and sat outside and watched a random parade that was going on. Our apartment is located right in the middle of downtown. I love downtown Mountain View! It is a cute cobblestone street type look with all kinds of stores and restaurants all along a one mile strip. After lunch we got on the internet and started looking up different rental properties in the area. We wrote down some addresses and went to try to take a look at several of the promising prospects. We actually found one that we are very hopeful about. It is in a new area that kind of has a seaside type look to it. They are all brand new and really nice! We meet with our real estate agent on Tuesday to start looking at some of the stuff she has found, so we are excited to tell her about what we have found and to see what she has to show us!

Sorry this post has been so long! There was lots of news to catch up on! I guess it is appropriate for the first blog post to be really long and probably full of tons of unnecessary information...that's just how I write and tell stories! We miss everyone already!